Multi-criteria assessment of spatial robust water resource vulnerability using the TOPSIS method coupled with objective and subjective weights in the Han river basin

Eun Sung Chung, Patricia Jitta Abdulai, Hyesun Park, Yeonjoo Kim, So Ra Ahn, Seong Joon Kim

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10 Citations (Scopus)


This study developed a multi-criteria approach to spatially assess the robust water resource vulnerability in sub-basins and applied it to the Han River basin. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) suggested three factors of vulnerability; namely, exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity were used in this study with respect to water quantity and quality. In this study, 16 water quantity indicators and 13 water quality indicators were selected to identify the vulnerability using the Technique for Order of Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) method. Environmental and socioeconomic data were obtained from the national statistics database, and hydrological data were simulated using the calibrated Soil andWater Assessment Tool (SWAT) model. Expert surveys and Shannon entropy method were used to determine subjective and objective weights for all indicators, individually. As a result, water quantity-vulnerable sub-basins were associated with high water use and water leakage ratios. Water quality-vulnerable sub-basins were associated with relatively high values of maximum consecutive dry days and heatwave days. The water quantity indices of both weighting methods showed relatively similar spatial distributions, while the distribution of water quality indices was distinct. These results suggest that considering different weighting methods is important for assessing the robust water resource vulnerability of sub-basins.

Original languageEnglish
Article number29
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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