From Knowledge to Practice: Building Back Stronger after Haiyan with the Aid of Science
Senator of the Republic of the Philippines and UNISDR Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation for Asia-Pacific (Philippines)
The Road to HFA2: Can Science Impact on Policy and Practice?
Consultant in Global Disaster Risk Reduction, Public Health England (PHE) (UK)
Intergovernmental Processes and the Framing of Disaster Risk Reduction
Professor of Geography, Director of Research and Deputy Head, Department of Geography, King’s College London (UK)
Water and Emergencies: The Impact of Thirst
Director, Forbes Calamity Prevention Pte Ltd. (Singapore)
The Politics of Disaster Recovery
Management Strategist and Former Senior Adviser to the Indonesian Government for the Tsunami Recovery (Australia)
For Accelerating the Reconstruction from the Great East Japan Earthquake
Counselor, Reconstruction Agency, the Government of Japan (GoJ) (Japan)
Senator of the Republic of the Philippines and UNISDR Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation for Asia-Pacific
When Haiyan, among the strongest typhoons in the world’s history, pummeled the Philippines, it left not only massive loss of lives and destruction but also lessons on disaster resilience. The devastation it caused has brought up the issue of effective early warnings and preparation, thus highlighting the crucial link between knowledge and practice. While science is vital to disaster risk reduction and management, turning it into concrete programs on the ground proves to be the greater challenge. The Haiyan experience is the Philippines’ new benchmark for disaster resilience and as it strives to rise from the tragedy, science will be its ally to build back stronger and wiser.
Loren LEGARDA is a Senator in the 16th Congress of the Republic of the Philippines. She is the Chairperson for the Senate Committee on Climate Change and the Senate Oversight Committee on Climate Change. As the chair of the Senate Oversight Committee on Climate Change, Senator LEGARDA ensures that climate change is addressed as a national priority and considered in policy making and development planning. Senator LEGARDA has also spearheaded an information and education campaign on climate change in the Philippines, producing films that seek to explain the science of climate change, its impact on everyday lives and how Filipinos can avert and adapt to the changing climate. In 2008, the UNISDR appointed her as its Regional Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaption for Asia and the Pacific during the 3rd Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction held in December 2008 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The Road to HFA2: Can Science Help to Inform Policy and Practice?
The biennial Fourth Session of the UNISDR Global Platform was held in Geneva over 21-23 May 2013, and brought together over 3,500 participants from 172 countries with representation from national and local governments, inter-governmental organisations, Red Cross and Red Crescent, non-government organisations, mayors and parliamentarians, representatives of local communities, indigenous peoples, children and youth, persons with disabilities, and leaders from business, academia and science. The need to take concrete measures to tackle risk drivers including poverty, hunger, disease, conflict, violence and inadequate health services, education, infrastructure, poor water and sanitation, housing, unemployment, land degradation, displacement, forced migration and discrimination was identified. The dynamic and multi-dimensional aspects of risk were noted and these require holistic and comparable methodologies for risk assessment to enable science-based decision-making and identification of development opportunities.
The process to develop a successor arrangement to the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) is now well underway. There was consensus that the new instrument (informally referred to as HFA2) should build on the HFA and introduce the innovations necessary to address the challenges of increasing risk over the next 20 to 30 years, and focus on implementation as a pragmatic, strategic, dynamic and realistic plan for action advancing integrated risk governance, underpinned by a clear set of principles and commitment to addressing the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable. In particular it is expected that the HFA2 will recognise the need to govern disaster risk reduction and resilience through clear responsibilities, strong coordination, enabled local action, appropriate financial instruments and a clear recognition of a central role for science.
This presentation offers the opportunity to discuss the statement on establishing an international science advisory mechanism for disaster risk reduction to strengthen resilience for the post-2015 agenda, and to determine if this an effective way forward for science to help inform policy and practice.
Virginia MURRAY was appointed Consultant in Global Disaster Risk Reduction for Public Health England (PHE) in April 2014, to focus on her continuing support for PHE’s international work where she is vice-chair of the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) Scientific and Technical Group and as a members of the UNISDR Advisory Group for the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. Prior to this she was Head of Extreme Events and Health Protection, PHE from January 2011 to March 2014. With the Extreme Events team, she developed evidence base information and advice on flooding, heat, cold, volcanic ash, and other extreme weather and natural hazards events. Before this she worked for the Centre for Radiation, Chemicals and Environmental Hazards for PHE, formerly known as the Health Protection Agency and has also had extensive experience in chemical incident training, preparedness and response. Appointed as Visiting Professor in Health Protection, MRC-HPA Centre for Environment and Health, Imperial College and King’s College, London (2004), she has published widely.
Professor of Geography, Director of Research and Deputy Head, Department of Geography, King’s College London (UK)
Future research and policy priorities for disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation are likely to be strongly influenced by the deliberations of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) process. This paper presents reflections on the outcomes of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Review and also of progress to date on the SDGs. It finds original conceptual and empirical orientations emerging from the IPCC process and scope for policy drivers to emerge from the SDGs, but in both cases limited capacity for the systematic collection and analysis of loss, vulnerability and associated development data is a major challenge.
Mark PELLING is Professor of Geography at King’s College London. His research interests are in the institutions and social relationships that shape vulnerability and adaptation to natural disasters, including those associated with climate change, and in the ways in which conflicting values and practices of development inform resilience and transformation in the face of environmental change. He has served as a coordinating author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX) and its Fifth Assessment Report.
He currently serves on the IRDR’s Science Committee, as well as that of the IGBP-IHDP core project Land-Ocean Interactions in the Coastal Zone (LOICZ). He has consulted on adaptation and disaster risk reduction issues for several agencies including the UK Environment Agency, DFID, UNDP and UN-HABITAT.
Water and Disasters: The Impact of Thirst
Director of Forbes Calamity Prevention Pte Ltd., Singapore
Many of the world’s biggest risks are related to water. A human being cannot survive longer than three days without drinking water. A farmer cannot grow food without irrigation water. A company cannot produce products and employ the workers to make them without industrial water. A country cannot achieve security and prosperity without a stable water supply. Water is earth’s greatest gift to humanity and its scarcity, availability, cost and quality are now our planet’s biggest risks – nowhere more so than in Asia.
Research to address water risks is essential, but eventually research must turn into action by governments, by companies, by individuals. To persuade people to change their water habits, planners and policymakers must reach their hearts as well as their minds. There is only one way to do that: with stories.
In my presentation, I am going to tell you three stories that illustrate the effects of water on national security, corporate supply chains and foreign investment.
- Could water scarcity cause a young man to consider an act of violence? I will introduce you to a Yemeni boy driven by his sister’s illness and his family’s daily struggle for water to commit an unthinkable act.
- Could contention for water break a company’s international supply chain? I’ll take you to Longhua, China where contention for water between farmers and a factory causes a young factory worker to lose her job – and interrupts production of the world’s most popular electronics product.
- Could water management give a competitive advantage to an entire country? I’ll bring you to Singapore to meet Ethan, a corporate planner deciding in which country to build a large pharmaceutical factory.
Nathaniel FORBES is the Director of Forbes Calamity Prevention Pte Ltd., which has provided business continuity, crisis and emergency management planning for multinational companies in Asia and Europe for 18 years. Nathaniel is certified as a Member of the Business Continuity Institute (MBCI), and as Certified Business Continuity Planner (CBCP) by the DRII. He was President of the Asia Council of the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM). He has lived and worked in Singapore since January 1996.
Management Strategist, Former Senior Adviser to the Indonesian Government for the Tsunami Recovery
Now all but forgotten, the world’s greatest humanitarian disaster, the 2004 tsunami, killed almost a quarter of a million people in Indonesia alone. Aceh was at the epicentre. Its recovery in four short years may now be in the past but its lessons live on and are more relevant today than ever. They offer insights into the politics of disaster recovery, the dominant but least explored and, arguably, the least understood of its dimensions. This and the management architecture the politics give rise to can make or break any recovery. The positive politics aligned in Indonesia to deliver an outstandingly successful recovery despite some serious strains. But misplaced political lessons from Aceh then found their way to Haiti to undermine its earthquake recovery programme. Why does one programme succeed while another flounders? This presentation by the former senior adviser to the Indonesian Government for tsunami recovery, and author of a distinguished analysis of it, explores these questions with personal insights on the challenges.
Bill NICOL is an independent management strategist and investigative author. He oversaw the recovery of Aceh following the 2004 tsunami as senior adviser to the Indonesian Government. His contributions included writing the overarching recovery strategy, designing key elements of the coordinating architecture, and supporting the Indonesian Government in managing its international relationships. He is author of Tsunami Chronicles: Adventures in Disaster Management (2013), a six-volume study of Aceh’s recovery and subsequent lessons. His earlier books include an investigation of the man-made humanitarian disaster that followed East Timor’s rushed decolonisation by Portugal, Timor: The Stillborn Nation (1978), which was later updated and republished as Timor: A Nation Reborn (2002); and an exposé of scientific fraud and mismanagement, McBride: Behind the Myth (1989).
Counselor, Reconstruction Agency, the Government of Japan (GoJ)
The presentation addresses the policy and measures of the Government of Japan against the Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE) – struck along the pacific coast of Japan’s Tohoku region on 11 March 2011, and triggered a powerful tsunami, which devastated much of the Tohoku coastal area and precipitated the nuclear accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. It also introduces the situation overview and reconstruction processes of affected areas.
Makoto MIZUTANI is a Counselor within the Reconstruction Agency of the Government of Japan. He joined the Government of Japan (Ministry of Transport) in 1987. He is engaged in the planning, processing, design, and management of transport projects in Japan and developing countries. He moved to the Reconstruction Agency as a Counselor in 2012, and has been engaged in the reconstruction of infrastructure from the Great East Japan Earthquake.