- Reports on activities in 2013, plans for 2014-2015
- The stakeholder consultation initiative and the role of RSOs
- Review of ongoing activities
- UN-SPIDER 2014 plan of activities
- Booklets and recommended practices
- The RSO network and technical advisory support activities (Group discussion)
10-13 February 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand)
The Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC), participated in the 46th Session 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, Thai Meteorological Department in Bangkok on 10-13 February 2014.
The more than 70 participants who attended the meeting included representatives from China, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore, US, Viet Nam, and the Hong Kong/Macao Special Administrative Regions, as well as representatives of the organizing institutions.
The participants discussed action plan of this committee's three working groups on meteorology, hydrology and disaster risk reduction (DRR) in the next year as well as their activities in the last year.
And the progress of SSOP (Synergized Standard Operating Procedures for Coastal Multi-Hazards Early Warning System) project with which ADRC involves also reported in this session.
Furthermore, regarding the Typhoon Haiyan which raged in the last year, the delegates of Philippines gave a presentation of the damage and the recovery states, and WMO etc reported the assistance for them such as the provision of the typhoon information.
As a result, we had a fruitful discussion such as the enhancement of cooperation among member countries.
For more information, visit
In December 2013, a team of researchers and experts from ADRC/IRP visited some areas in the provinces of Leyte and Samar that were impacted by typhoon Haiyan (local name Yolanda) in the Philippines. The objective was to draw information on preparedness, response, and plans for recovery in order to provide greater understanding of the disaster, including what gaps and challenges need to be addressed.
The team found that essential preparations were made in anticipation of the super typhoon, such that preemptive evacuations to schools, churches, stadiums, and public buildings were made. Additionally, relief goods and services were ready in most command centers. However, the preparations did not match the magnitude of the unexpected super typhoon which caused massive storm surge that destroyed the evacuation and command centers, specifically those located near the coast. Among of the immediate impacts were high casualties, relief goods washed away, and command centers became dysfunctional. Subsequently, the response effort had no choice but to be delayed. As island provinces, there were challenges in the operational capacities of airports and seaports as well as communication/coordination because most infrastructures were damaged. In fact, most relief goods and services were stranded in some islands before reaching the impacted areas.
In terms of recovery, the local governments and communities acknowledged that greater challenges in housing, livelihoods, and infrastructure are expected. Since most areas where flattened, people immediately need shelter. Communities also need alternative livelihoods because assets from original activities such as coconut harvesting, farming, and fishing were gone. Furthermore, the local market, transportation, energy, and communication infrastructure were also urgently needed. The findings from the visit suggest that in terms of preparedness, public awareness on storm surge needs to be strengthened, location of evacuation and command centers need to be reviewed, and policies and activities on preparedness (e.g. early warning systems) need to be reassessed. In terms of response, the capacities of local governments and communities to provide immediate relief goods/services need to be enhanced in anticipation of the delays from external agencies due to logistical challenges. In terms of recovery, it is crucial that communities are actively engaged in planning and implementing the programs and projects.
In view of these suggestions, IRP/ADRC plans to organize a workshop in the Province of Leyte in early 2014 to be participated by local government officials and key stakeholders to re-assess the needs for drills and proper information dissemination, re-evaluate early warning systems, and provide technical assistance for recovery planning at the provincial/city/municipality levels.
23 - 29 December 2013, Maldives
Since 2009, ADRC has initiated a pilot project of DRR Policy Peer Review with the aim of developing DRR capacity of ADRC member countries by sharing information and strengthening the relationship among member countries.
This year, "Developing a National Framework on Managing Internally Displaced Populations (IDPs) during emergencies" was selected as one of the target projects of the fifth year. After the submission of country report, reviewer team composed of Ph.D. Anawat Suppasri (Associate Professor, International Research Institute of Disaster Science, Tohoku University, Japan), Ms. Nwet Yin Aye (Deputy Director, The Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, Myanmar) and Mr. Junji Moriwaki (Researcher of ADRC) had visited Maldives to conduct interview surveys.
The team visited relevant organizations involving in DRR activities to examine how they have been making efforts of developing DRR in Maldives. Then, the team conducted inspection and interview at 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami affected area, and prepared a draft report of the survey result with all findings and recommendations (such as the development of DRR at community level, through capability and legislation building). Also the workshop was held in Male for getting opinion and comments to finalize the report, as well as introducing good practices for reducing tsunami risk and IDPs management activities in Japan and Myanmar. It provided a very good opportunity for exchanging opinions each other.
This project aims at developing the mutual learning process among ADRC member countries instead of one-way learning. After the survey missions, reviewer team will compile survey reports and send them to target countries and then to ADRC member countries to enhance cross-fertilization.
ADRC would like to express its sincerest gratitude to all of those who have made precious contribution to this project.
1-5 December 2013, Macao
The Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC), participated in the 8th Integrated Workshop in conjunction with the 2nd Training and Research Coordination Group Forum 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, the Macao Meteorological and Geophysical Bureau in Macao on 2-4 December 2013. The more than 100 participants who attended the meeting included representatives from Cambodia, China, D.P.R. Korea, Japan, Lao, Malaysia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Thailand, US, Viet Nam, as well as representatives of the organizing institutions. The participants discussed their approaches of"Forecasting, Warning and DRR Strategies in the Mitigation of Tropical Cyclone Impact in a Multi-hazard Environment" which was the main theme of the meeting.
For the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group, Japan's Cabinet Office gave a presentation on the damage caused by typhoons in 2013 and on ADRC activities such as the Visiting Researcher Program.
Furthermore, regarding the Typhoon Haiyan, the delegates of Philippines and Vietnam gave a presentation of the damage and the current states, and WMO and Japan Meteorological Agency, etc reported the assistance for them such as the provision of the typhoon information. As a result, we had a fruitful discussion such as the enhancement of cooperation among member countries.
The Typhoon Committee has two other working groups on meteorology and hydrology, in addition to the working group on disaster risk reduction. In this time, the three working groups and the Training and Research Coordination Group Forum was held together as an integrated event.
For more information, visit http://www.typhooncommittee.org/8IWS_2TRCG/8IWS_2TRCG.html
27-29 November 2013 (Bangkok, Thailand)
The third session of the Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction, organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), was held at the United Nations Conference Centre in Bangkok, Thailand, from 27 to 29 November 2013.
As a cooperation of this committee, the ADRC sent one representative from IRP secretariat to attend. The forum's many participants included officials from UNESCAP member countries, and experts from intergovernmental organizations.
During the session titled "Item 4: Mainstreaming disaster risk reduction into development", Mr. Shingo Kouchi, ADRC Senior Expert as well as IRP Senior Recovery Expert, valued the Government and people of UNESCAP member countries' high ability to promote recovery and reconstruction efforts following each large-scale disasters. Mr. Kouchi also noted that ADRC and IRP have long been in help to ADRC member countries' efforts to utilize Japanese technologies, experiences, and lessons related to disaster risk reduction. Among those is three month-long Visiting Researcher (VR) Program, a capacity building program which ADRC offers government officials, and we are pleased to observe many former VRs are now playing a central role at their ministries in charge of disaster management.
Mr. Kouch also emphasized the importance of everyday preparedness by citizens, in addition to the government efforts, when a massive disaster strikes. In this connection, the two big events; ADRC's "Asian Conference on Disaster Reduction" to be held in Tokyo, Japan in 4-6 March 2014, and IRP's "International Recovery Forum" to be held in Kobe, Japan in 21 January 2014, will show the evidence of progress of disaster reduction and preparedness toward the next UN World Conference on Disaster Reduction in 2015.
The seminar and pilot lesson for "Promotion of Disaster Education of Schools" project was held in Vientiane, Laos, from 14th to 15th November 2013. It was organized jointly by the "Ministry of Education and Sports" and the "Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC)". More than thirty teachers and sixty students from primary school and junior high school attended this two-day workshop.
On 14th November, participants including teachers, experts and the ADRC confirmed latest situation of natural disaster and disaster education program in Laos. Also the contents of lesson for next day at school were discussed. On 15th, teachers had a lecture "Basic Knowledge about Natural Disaster" for student based on yesterday's activity. Teacher as lecturer were focused on flood, landslide and fire which are main natural disasters in Laos. Students could have impressed these topics deeply. As conclusion, teachers proposed that lessons for students at their own school will be conducted continually.
ADRC hopes that the outcome of this project will be shared in other schools on disaster education throughout Laos.
Note: This project is part of the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund Projects and aimed to promote disaster education in ASEAN countries through such means as training of school teachers followed by school lessons facilitated by trained teachers.
5-7 November 2013 (Bagan, Myanmar)
Upon the request of ASEAN Secretariat, IRP/ADRC participated in the ASEAN Workshop on Recovery Planning, 5-7 November 2013 at Aye Yar River View Resort in Bagan, Myanmar. The event was aimed at reviewing the progress as well as identifying the gaps/challenges of the Recovery Component of the ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response (AADMER) Work Program. The ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management (ACDM) formed a Working Group on Recovery comprising Myanmar and Indonesia as co-chairs and Brunei and Philippines as members. One of the functions of the Working Group is to develop a Toolbox on Recovery to be used by member states in recovery planning.
The toolbox is envisioned as (i) repository of practices and experiences on recovery of ASEAN Member States; (ii) compilation of best practices and other related resources; (iii) recovery guidelines; (iv) capacity building tools and activities; and (v) mechanisms for coordination and resource mobilization. To contribute in achieving this vision, IRP/ADRC shared tools and guidance as well as relevant materials on recovery planning, including guidance notes, recovery planning module, and case studies from around the globe.
As a way forward, IRP/ADRC committed to provide technical assistance to the ACDM's Working Group on Recovery, if needed.