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Press Release

Willis Research Network partners with Cloud to Street to research and develop flood risk tools

May 6, 2020

Risk and Analytics|Corporate Risk Tools and Technology

LONDON, 6th May 2020 – The Willis Research Network (WRN) announces a new partnership with Cloud to Street, a global flood-mapping and monitoring platform designed for governments, humanitarian organisations and private sector actors to manage flood risk, underpin risk financing, and respond to catastrophic flooding in near real-time.

The new partnership will leverage Cloud to Street’s high-resolution satellite and machine learning flood monitoring technology and dynamic analytics systems, which include near real-time flood monitoring and high-cadence flood mapping to build and implement reliable and scalable risk transfer solutions to serve current and future clients. These innovative applications enable communities and businesses to be better prepared for, and act faster after an event, increasing resilience to catastrophic flooding.

The partnership will enable us to build and implement innovative risk transfer tools to better serve the needs of current and future clients across both public and private sectors”

Simon Young
Senior Director, Willis Towers Watson

The partnership will work to address the insurance gap in the developing world, where some 90% of economic losses from disasters remain uninsured, putting economically vulnerable households at greater risk and slowing recovery efforts following disasters. For the past two years Willis Re, the reinsurance broking arm of Willis Towers Watson, has worked with Cloud to Street to expand insurance coverage in Indonesia. New projects are planned in Africa later this year.

Simon Young, Senior Director, Willis Towers Watson, said: “We are very pleased to welcome Cloud to Street into the Willis Research Network and look forward to working together through our Climate and Resilience Hub. We will collaborate on researching and developing tools to better understand flood risk and its real-time manifestation around the world. This will enable us to build and implement innovative risk transfer tools to better serve the needs of current and future clients across both public and private sectors, and from individual homeowners and farmers to corporate supply-chains and sovereign governments.”

Bessie Schwarz, CEO and co-founder of Cloud to Street said: “While working with governments and insurers in almost 20 countries, we have seen first-hand the urgent need for innovative disaster financing and new insurance products around flooding. We’re thrilled to partner with Willis Towers Watson to scale Cloud to Street’s flood technology and bring reliable parametric flood insurance to the governments we support and many others. Together, our combined expertise will enable us to offer insurance tools that mitigate the economic impact of flooding for communities throughout Africa and the world.”

About the Willis Research Network

The Willis Research Network (WRN) is an award-winning collaboration between academia and the finance and insurance industries. Since it was founded in 2006, the WRN has explored ways in which the world’s leading research organisations can help confront the challenges of managing risk and delivering resilience for our industry, providing a transmission between research and business. Through the WRN, Willis Towers Watson has teamed up with more than 50 world-leading institutions pioneering science and new analytical approaches to traditional problems of greatest relevance to our clients and our industry. Learn more at

About Cloud to Street

Cloud to Street is a flood-mapping and monitoring system designed for governments, humanitarian organisations and insurers in low data environments to effectively respond and prepare for disasters. Originally founded with seed funding from Google in 2014, Cloud to Street’s technology combines high resolution satellite imagery, cloud computing, machine learning, and community intelligence to monitor floods in near real-time and analyse flood risk remotely around the globe. Since its founding, Cloud to Street has worked with governments and global insurers in almost 20 countries to provide the tools and analytics they need to both respond faster and reduce risk to disasters over the long-term. Learn more at

About Willis Towers Watson

Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ: WLTW) is a leading global advisory, broking and solutions company that helps clients around the world turn risk into a path for growth. With roots dating to 1828, Willis Towers Watson has 45,000 employees serving more than 140 countries and markets. We design and deliver solutions that manage risk, optimise benefits, cultivate talent, and expand the power of capital to protect and strengthen institutions and individuals. Our unique perspective allows us to see the critical intersections between talent, assets and ideas — the dynamic formula that drives business performance. Together, we unlock potential.

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