20-24 October 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand)
ADRC participated in the 9th Integrated Workshop of the Typhoon Committee which was jointly organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Typhoon Committee Secretariat on 20-24 October 2014. The more than 80 participants who attended the meeting included representatives from China, D.P.R. Korea, Japan, Lao, Malaysia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Thailand, US, Viet Nam, Hong Kong and Macao Special Administrative Regions, as well as representatives of the organizing institutions.
The participants discussed their approaches of "Synergized, Integrated, Collaborative Standard Operating Procedures Strategies to Improve Early Warning System for Coastal Multi-hazards" which was the main theme of the meeting. And reports were given on the typhoon damage sustained in each country, as well as on the current year's activities. These included the project on Synergized Standard Operating Procedures for Coastal Multi-hazards Early Warning System (SSOP), in which ADRC is involved.
For the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group, it was also considered that the participation in the "UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction" at Sendai, Japan on March 2015 as the Typhoon Committee.
The Typhoon Committee has two other working groups covering meteorology and hydrology, in addition to the working group on disaster risk reduction. This time, the three working group meetings were held together as an integrated event.
For more information, visit the Typhoon Committee website:
11-18 October 2014 (Armenia)
Since 2009, ADRC has been conducting DRR Policy Peer Reviews to help develop the DRR capacity of ADRC-member countries through the promotion of information sharing and through the strengthening of relationships among member countries.
The target project selected for review this year, the sixth since the Peer Review process was launched, is a project aimed at Seismic Safety Capacity Building of nursing homes and orphanages in the northern part of Armenia. After the country report was submitted, a reviewer team comprised of Dr. Kazuyoshi Ohnishi (Associate Professor, Graduate School of Engineering, Kobe University, Japan), Dr. Linsheng Gu (Professor and Executive Director, Institute for Disaster Management and Reconstruction (IDMR), Sichuan University - Hong Kong Polytechnic University, China) and Mr. Junji Moriwaki (ADRC Researcher) visited Armenia to conduct interviews.
The team visited the National Survey for Seismic Protection Agency, which is involved in DRR activities, to examine its DRR development efforts in Armenia. The team then conducted inspection of nursing homes and orphanages, after which it prepared a draft report of its survey results with all its findings (i.e. "The map of evacuation routes and places is posted on the wall" "The orphanage sets a rule that elder students should assist younger pupils in disaster", etc.) and recommendations (i.e. "Need to replace the furniture not to impede evacuation route" "Cooperation with local community regularly for assuming emergency situations", etc.). A workshop was also held to gather opinions and comments used in finalizing the report as well as to share good DRR practices from Japan and China with local participants. This proved to be a very good opportunity for participants to share information and ideas with one another.
This project aims to develop a mutual learning process among ADRC-member countries, rejecting conventional models of one-way learning. After its survey mission ends, the reviewer team compiles a survey report, which it sends to the countries examined as well as to other ADRC member countries, so as to enhance cross-fertilization.
ADRC would like to express its sincerest gratitude to all of those who have made such important contributions to this project.
10-12 September 2014 (Washington D.C., USA)
Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC), in cooperation with the International Recovery Platform (IRP), organized a number of the technical sessions at the second World Reconstruction Conference (WRC 2) in Washington D.C., 10-12 September 2014. Hosted by the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR), a member of IRP, the conference was aimed at building consensus on resilient recovery as an imperative for sustainable development and poverty reduction. It also discussed innovative approaches for post-disaster recovery and reconstruction to further inform the deliberation of Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
At the opening, Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank, emphasized the importance of including disaster risk reduction in building back better disaster recovery principles, focusing specifically on developing countries at high risk. In that regard, he expected the conference to deliberate on a way forward on disaster recovery, particularly in fragile contexts, and highlight the role of recovery in poverty reduction and shared prosperity.
The three IRP/ADRC technical sessions contributed greatly in the discussions to achieve the objectives of the conference through the recommendations from the panelists and participants. In Session 1: Making Post-Disaster Recovery Efficient and Effective: Elements of Good Recovery for Articulation in Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the recommendations to aid governments in facilitating effective recovery are as follow: (i) having stable fund for recovery; (ii) using scientific information to support policy decisions; and (iii) collaborative efforts among all stakeholders, including the private sector.
In Session 8: Ten Years after Tsunami: A Retrospective, the recommendations to improve recovery operations include the following: (i) ensuring speed and focus on recovery of livelihoods; (ii) creating greater participation of community in recovery planning and implementation processes; (iii) linking recovery from tsunami to long-term development; and (iv) adopting simple measures of impacts of tsunami recovery programs.
In Session 16: Role of Private Sector in Recovery: The Case for Private Sector Engagement in Recovery for Post-2015 Framework for DRR, emphasized that private sector is a key factor in recovery because they understand the context and have the expertise to solve problems. This session recommended that private sector can be effectively engaged through the following actions: (i) providing opportunity for private sector to invest in recovery as means of sustaining businesses; (ii) promoting pre-contract agreements and pre-disaster recovery planning; and (iii) building long-term and sustainable relationship between public and private sector.
Included in the conference was the 15th Steering Committee meeting of IRP which mainly discussed its future role in the implementation of Post-2015 Framework for DRR as well as IRP's preparations for the International Recovery Forum in January 2015 in Kobe and World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in March 2015 in Sendai. One potential future role of IRP is to serve as a global mechanism for coordinating recovery policies and recovery processes.
Speakers at the closing plenary imparted key actions to move forward. Ms. Margareta Wahlstrom, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction UNISDR, outlined the following recommendations: (i) bridging the segregation gap between climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) that are exhibited in research initiatives and in disaster preparedness, response, and recovery planning; (ii) reconciling response and recovery approaches for hazards and conflicts; (iii) recognizing of the critical role of local governments and communities in DRR and recovery by encouraging national governments to motivate and support local responses; and (iv) promoting collaboration among multi-stakeholders in recognition of the complexity of recovery process.
Ms. Rachel Kyte, Vice President and Special Envoy for Climate Change, World Bank Group, indicated that: (i) resilience is all about people: the more we understand about people the more we understand about communities and their dynamics; (ii) it's not just about money: while actors need to make sure that there are finances to properly respond, governments must have the capacity to allocate, disperse, and protect funds; (iii) initiatives and messages should be "practical and simple"; and (iv) foster effective partnerships to reduce the burden.
Mr. Saber Hossain Chowdhury, Member of Parliament, People's Republic of Bangladesh, delivered the Conference Statement: Strengthen Resilient Recovery and Reconstruction in the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction aimed at advancing consensus, national and internationally, on the critical role of resilient recovery for sustainable development and poverty reduction. He ended his presentation saying, "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail".
The WRC2 will inform the next round of deliberations at the second Preparations Committee meeting in November in Geneva leading to the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in March 2015 in Sendai, Japan where the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction will be adopted.
For more information, please contact IRP Recovery Expert, Mr. Potutan (firstname.lastname@example.org).
ADRC participated in the meeting named above, which was organized by the United Nations Economical and Social Commission and the Pacific (UNESCAP) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), from 23 to 25 September 2014 in Bangkok, Thailand. About 80 participants attended the meeting including representatives of relevant agencies, businesses, and academic institutions in the Asia-Pacific region. The meeting primarily covered the following topics.
•Natural disaster risk reduction
•Humanitarian and community support for disaster risk reduction and management
•Contributions of space technology and GIS for disaster risk reduction and management
•Use of space technology and GIS for information management during disasters
•Use of space technology and GIS for economic and business resilience
•Integration of space technology and GIS for disaster warnings and evacuation activities
•Use of space technology and GIS for promoting regional collaboration
ADRC gave a presentation on its activities within the Sentinel Asia program and on the use of satellites within the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA).
ADRC participated in the Second Regional Ministerial Conference of Disaster Management Authorities in Central Asia under the "Central Asia plus Japan" Dialogue held in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic on 18-19 September 2014. This conference, organized by the government of Japan, the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Kyrgyz Republic, and UNDP Kyrgyzstan, aimed to discuss the possible creation of a high level forum for disaster management authorities involved in DRR under the "Central Asia plus Japan" Dialogue. The participants included representatives of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, as well as the Embassy of Japan in the Kyrgyz Republic, JICA, and other international organizations.
During the conference, participants discussed the most urgent DRR issues facing the region as well as future opportunities for cooperation. ADRC presented information on the outcomes of DRR programs conducted in various Central Asian countries, and identified needs and areas for future DRR cooperation in the region.
At the end of the two-day conference, the participants agreed to establish and regularly convene a forum for the heads of the disaster management authorities in Central Asia for discussing efforts to strengthen regional cooperation in reducing, preventing, and responding to disaster risks. In addition, an expert level working group of disaster management authorities in Central Asia will be established to support this forum.
ADRC has been a participating research institution in the SATREPS Chile Project since 2013. At the end of August 2014, ADRC dispatched staff members to research tsunami disaster awareness among the residents of Iquique, Chile. This research was carried out using in-person meetings and questionnaires. Since Iquique experienced a large-scale earthquake in April 2014, the tsunami disaster awareness of local residents exceeded our expectations. ADRC would like to continue conducting research on disaster risk reduction so that its findings can be applied in both Chile and Japan.
14 August 2014 (Manila, Philippines)
The ASEAN High-Level Conference on Assistance for the Recovery of Yolanda-Affected Areas (ARYA), hosted by the Government of the Philippines, co-hosted by the ASEAN, was held in Manila, Philippines on 14 August 2014. As a cooperation of this conference, the ADRC sent one representative from IRP secretariat to attend. The conference's over 200 participants included government officials from ASEAN member countries, disaster managers across the Philippines and experts from international organizations.
During his statement in plenary session titled "Role of Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC) towards Recovery of Typhoon Yolanda -What we have done so far, and what we can do now and on", Mr. Shingo Kouchi, ADRC Senior Expert as well as IRP Senior Recovery Expert, highly appreciated every effort made by the Government and people of the Philippine since the occurrence of the disaster. Similar to Japan's situation, it has been widely recognized in the Philippines that Government and people need to promote multi-stakeholder approach towards effective disaster mitigation/prevention and reconstruction/recovery. Mr. Kouchi also stressed that ADRC and IRP have been working closely with the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and many stakeholders in the Philippines, and ADRC/IRP will seek possibilities of providing technical assistance for the Philippines' recovery and rehabilitation efforts of Yolanda-affected communities to enhance current efforts of the government.
With the concept of "Building Back Better than Before", ADRC would like to make continuous efforts for realization of disaster-resilient society and communities across the Asian region, by sharing Japanese technologies, experiences, and lessons learned from the past. For more information, please contact Kouchi (email@example.com).
The 8th Senior Disaster Management Officials Forum (SDMOF), was held on August 11-12, 2014, Beijing, China.
Representatives and experts from APEC economies and international agencies gathered for this forum (APEC-funded project led by China) under the theme: 'Science and technology strengthening disaster risk reduction,'
Participants shared experiences and best practices under following topics: Innovative role of science and technology in disaster preparedness; Science and technology strengthens efficiency in emergency response; Science and technology enables rehabilitation for increased resiliency; and International and regional cooperation on science and technology application for disaster risk reduction.