Internationally recognized as pioneers and leaders in Dam Safety Risk Assessment and Risk Management.


Engineers and Economists, LLC

Our work in dam safety risk management is summarized in the following areas:


We have worked on risk assessments for about 800 dams for owners, operators and regulators. More than 90 of these have been for USACE. Typically our projects are performed in partnership with engineering firms or government agencies with RAC taking a facilitation/coordination role. The results of these risk assessments have impacted programmatic and individual dam safety decisions, including the adoption of operating restrictions. The Portfolio Risk Assessment approach, which we first applied in 1997, has become the standard of practice in Australia, has been adopted by USACE, has been applied to more than 300 UK dams, and is being applied in other countries.

Technical Development and Organizational Change

We have progressively improved the state-of-the-art in dam safety risk assessment and management over about 30 years. We have worked with government agencies, private firms, professional bodies and government-private sector partnerships to strengthen dam safety practice through the integration of risk assessment and risk management approaches at all levels, including corporate/agency, state, national and international. We have extensive experience assisting owners to better justify dam safety funding.

Technology Transfer 

We have designed and conducted a wide range of professional training activities including: executive briefings for Boards of Directors and senior government officials, seminars and workshops for dam safety engineers and managers, extended training courses for engineering staff, on-the-job training and demonstration/pilot risk assessments. This has included development and review of guidelines for ICOLD, USSD, ANCOLD, CIRIA (UK), USACE, Reclamation, ASCE, CDA, Defra (UK), EA (UK) and Ontario Hydro. 

Expert Panels and Expert Testimony

We have served on numerous Expert Review Panels and Peer Reviews of dam safety programs, including Reclamation. We have extensive experience in providing expert testimony for major lawsuits, including dam and canal failures and operational incidents.

Supporting Technical Studies

RAC Principals are recognized experts in the fields of design flood estimation, dam breach and flood inundation modeling, geotechnical, earthquake and structural engineering, resource and business economics, tolerable risk evaluation, and life-loss and economic consequences estimation.    

Software Development

We have developed professional software for portfolio risk management for a large portfolio of dams; DAMRAE for dam safety risk analysis calculations for USACE; and LIFESim for life-loss estimation for dam and levee failure and natural floods for the USACE and ANCOLD.

RAC Engineers & Economists is an internationally recognized specialty consultancy, which has had a lead role in introducing dam safety risk assessment and risk management to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), and other organizations in many countries. RAC has developed broad, flexible, practical and defensible approaches to individual and portfolio dam safety risk management. We have been extensively involved with the introduction of dam risk assessment in Australia.  We have pioneered this field since 1978, although RAC was formed in 1986.

Corporate Overview