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Publications

Publications by João Claro

2015

Cohesive fire management within an uncertain environment: A review of risk handling and decision support systems

Authors
Pacheco, AP; Claro, J; Fernandes, PM; de Neufville, R; Oliveira, TM; Borges, JG; Rodrigues, JC;

Publication
FOREST ECOLOGY AND MANAGEMENT

Abstract
Wildfire management has been struggling in recent years with escalating devastation, expenditures, and complexity. Given the copious factors involved and the complexity of their interactions, uncertainty in the outcomes is a prominent feature of wildfire management strategies, at both policy and operational levels. Improvements in risk handling and in risk-based decision support tools have therefore a key role in addressing these challenges. In this paper, we review key systems created to support wildfire management decision-making at different levels and scales, and describe their evolution from an initial focus on landscape-level fire growth simulation and burn probability assessment, to the incorporation of exposure and economic loss potential (allowing the translation of ignition likelihood, fire environment terrain, fuels, and weather and suppression efficacy into potential fire effects), the integration with forest management and planning, and more recently, to developments in the assessment of values at risk, including real-time assessment. This evolution is linked to a progressive widening of the scope of usage of these systems, from an initial more limited application to risk assessment, to the subsequent inclusion of functionality enabling their Utilization in the context of risk management, and more recently, to their explicit casting in the broader societal context of risks and decisions, from a risk governance perspective. This joint evolution can be seen as the result of a simultaneous pull from methodological progresses in risk handling, and push from technological progress in wildfire management decision support tool, as well as more broadly in computational power. We identify the key benefits and challenges in the development and adoption of these systems, as well as future plausible research trends.

2015

Geographic attribution of an electricity system renewable energy target: Local economic, social and environmental tradeoffs

Authors
Schell, KR; Claro, J; Fischbeck, P;

Publication
RENEWABLE & SUSTAINABLE ENERGY REVIEWS

Abstract
The 2014 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report asserts that investment in low-carbon electricity production will need to rise by several hundred billion dollars annually, before 2030, in order to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere by 2100. In recognition of this urgent need to mitigate climate change, many governments have already established policies to spur renewable energy investment in the electricity sector. One such policy measure is a renewable energy target (RET), which sets a target percentage of electricity production to be generated from renewable sources by a specified date. Variations on this policy have been implemented around the world, from the EU 20-20-20 to diverse renewable portfolio standards in U.S. states and municipalities. This work analyzes economic, environmental and social aspects of a geographic attribution (i.e. Isolated, Regional or Country) of an RET to gain insights on the associated tradeoffs. In the case study of the Azores Islands, Portugal, the regional geographic attribution of an RET captures the best of all three tradeoffs.

2014

Flexible planning of the investment mix in a forest fire management system: spatially-explicit intra-annual optimization, considering prevention, pre-suppression, suppression, and escape costs

Authors
Pacheco, AP; Claro, J;

Publication
Advances in forest fire research

Abstract

2014

Addressing trade-offs among fuel management scenarios through a dynamic and spatial integrated approach for enhanced decision-making in eucalyptus forest

Authors
Botequim, B; Ager, A; Pacheco, AP; Oliveira, T; Claro, J; Fernandes, PM; Borges, JG;

Publication
Advances in forest fire research

Abstract

2014

Simulation analysis of the impact of ignitions, rekindles, and false alarms on forest fire suppression

Authors
Pacheco, AP; Claro, J; Oliveira, T;

Publication
CANADIAN JOURNAL OF FOREST RESEARCH-REVUE CANADIENNE DE RECHERCHE FORESTIERE

Abstract
Rekindles and false alarms are phenomena that have a significant presence in the Portuguese forest fire management system and an important impact on suppression resources in particular and fire management resources in general. In this paper, we propose a discrete-event simulation model of a forest fire suppression system designed to analyze the joint impact of ignitions, rekindles, and false alarms on the performance of the system. The model is applied to a case study of the district of Porto, Portugal, for the critical period of the forest fire season, between July and September 2010. We study the behavior of the system's point of collapse, comparing the real base scenario with a benchmark scenario built with reference values for rekindles and false alarms, and also as a function of the number of fire incidents, considering historical variations. The results of the analysis are useful for operational decision-making and provide relevant information on the trade-off between prevention and suppression efforts.

2013

The role of a Proof of Concept Center in a university ecosystem: an exploratory study

Authors
Maia, C; Claro, J;

Publication
JOURNAL OF TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER

Abstract
The Proof of Concept phase in university technology transfer is considered to be critical for the success of both licensing and the creation of spin-off companies. In the United States, Proof of Concept Centers are emerging as successful structures to address the challenges of this phase. In this paper, we present a framework to assess the role for such a structure in a university ecosystem. The framework is built from previous references that we use to explicitly link the features of Proof of Concept Centers with the challenges of the Proof of Concept phase, and establish their specific contributions to the overall technology commercialization efforts of a university. We illustrate the application of this framework in a case study of the University of Coimbra, in Portugal, and develop a characterization that is representative of the role that a Proof of Concept Center can play in comparable university ecosystems that feature conventional technology commercialization structures, and struggle with the challenges of the Proof of Concept phase. Our study suggests that there is in fact a possible role for a Proof of Concept Center in the regional ecosystem of the University of Coimbra, with a potentially very relevant impact in the technology commercialization process, through networking outside academia and research environments, funding of Proof of Concept activities, and technology entrepreneurship education for the development of entrepreneurial skills for researchers.

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