Risk-Based Power System Planning Integrating Social and Economic Direct and Indirect Costs

Lamine Mili, Kevin Dooley

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


This chapter investigates the decision making processes associated with the risk assessment and management of bulk power transmission systems under a unified methodological framework of security and survivability objectives. First, it is presented as a partitioned multiobjective risk method aimed at finding tradoffs between N-1 security and survivability to catastrophic events, namely between various levels of resiliency ranging from low to high damage severity while minimizing the cost of the design. In addition, a method is proposed that assesses the risk of cascading events using a probabilistic algorithm that pinpoints the weak links of the network by simulating the propagation of the failures throughout the transmission network due to hidden failures in relays. These weak branches are the system components in which special controllers are to be installed. Because the risk of a system failure, viewed as an event, is defined as the probability times the consequence of this event, an assessment of the consequence of this event must be carried out, for instance by means of its costs. In this chapter, these costs are defined as consisting of technical, business, and social costs, and a method for estimating them proposed. In order to examine social costs, a novel form of text analysis is proposed. This method examines media coverage of two high-profile power failures-the California crises and of the 2003 U.S. blackout. It is found that in both cases power system failure stories do not generate sustained public interest regardless of their magnitude, implying that technical costs thus do not have to be explicitly taken into account when doing risk assessments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEconomic Market Design and Planning for Electric Power Systems
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)9780470472088
StatePublished - Dec 7 2009


  • Energy crises and public crises
  • Partitioned multiobjective risk method
  • Risk-based power system planning and social and economic direct and indirect cost integration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy(all)


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