UK-based Willis Group Holdings reinsurance division has unveiled a new Japan Tsunami Model, in a bid to advance the industry’s understanding of catastrophic tsunami losses.

The model is the first tsunami model with probabilistic and deterministic modelling functions, developed in-house alongside the Willis Research Network.

Willis Re Japan regional director William Thompson said: "The tragedies of the India Ocean tsunami in 2004 and the tsunami that followed the Tokohu earthquake in 2011 plainly illustrated how damaging these catastrophes can be."

The new model integrates tsunami loss information with earthquake shaking damage output, and provides the latest intelligence to quantify and manage risk from these extreme events, where historically losses have been little understood.

Willis Research Network chairman Rowan Douglas said: "The Willis Japan Tsunami Model demonstrates how the Willis Research Network can harness the expertise of leading academics to meet the direct needs of the industry.

"By combining academic excellence with in-house analytics and market expertise we have developed an independent model whilst also being in a unique position to analyse the new tools that are now emerging from model vendors."

Willis Re, through the Willis Research Network, has worked with Tohoku University and UCL on the model since 2010.