Linking community knowledge with modern techniques to record and analyse risk related data is one way of engaging and mobilising community capacity. This paper discusses the use of the Geographic Information System (GIS) at the local level and the need for integrating modern technology and indigenous knowledge into disaster management. It suggests a way to mobilise available human and technical resources in order to strengthen a good partnership between local communities and local and national institutions. The paper also analyses the current vulnerability of two communes by correlating hazard risk and loss/damage caused by disasters and the contribution that domestic risk maps in the community can make to reduce this risk. The disadvantages, advantages and lessons learned from the GIS flood risk mapping project are presented through the case study of the Quang Tho Commune in Thua Thien Hue province, central Viet Nam.
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