2015 Vol. 6, No. 2

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Analyzing the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction
Ilan Kelman, Michael H. Glantz
2015, 6(2): 105-106. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0056-3
The Role of Knowledge in Disaster Risk Reduction
Juergen Weichselgartner, Patrick Pigeon
2015, 6(2): 107-116. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0052-7
Disaster risk reduction policy and practice require knowledge for informed decision making and coordinated action. Although the knowledge production and implementation processes are critical for disaster risk reduction, these issues are seldom systematically addressed in-depth in disaster studies and policy programs. While efforts and improvements have been made with regard to data and information, only limited resources are committed to improving knowledge management structures and integrating knowledge systems at different spatial levels. The recently adopted Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 addresses knowledge-related issues and provides the opportunity to highlight the critical role of knowledge in disaster risk reduction. This article presents insights into potential conceptualizations of knowledge that would advance disaster research and policy. We use cases from France to illustrate challenges of and pathways to disaster risk reduction. We suggest to further strengthen efforts that improve our understanding of the connections between disaster risk, knowledge, and learning. A better integration of multiple scales, different societal actors, various knowledge sources, and diverse disciplines into disaster risk research will increase its relevance for decision-makers in policy and practice. Well-targeted incentives and political backing will improve the coherence, coordination, and sharing of knowledge among various actors and arenas.
Climate Change and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction
Ilan Kelman
2015, 6(2): 117-127. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0046-5
This article reviews climate change within the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR), analyzing how climate change is mentioned in the framework’s text and the potential implications for dealing with climate change within the context of disaster risk reduction. Three main categories are examined. First, climate change affecting disaster risk and disasters, demonstrating too much emphasis on the single hazard driver and diminisher of climate change. Second, cross-sectoral approaches, for which the SFDRR treads carefully, thereby unfortunately entrenching artificial differences and divisions, although appropriately offering plenty of support to other sectors from disaster risk reduction. Third, implementation, for which climate change plays a suitable role without being overbearing, but for which other hazard influencers should have been treated similarly. Overall, the mentions of climate change within the SFDRR put too much emphasis on the hazard part of disaster risk. Instead, within the context of the three global sustainable development processes that seek agreements in 2015, climate change could have been used to further support an all-vulnerabilities and all-resiliences approach. That could be achieved by placing climate change adaptation as one subset within disaster risk reduction and climate change mitigation as one subset within sustainable development.
From Yokohama to Sendai: Approaches to Participation in International Disaster Risk Reduction Frameworks
Arielle Tozier de la Poterie, Marie-Ange Baudoin
2015, 6(2): 128-139. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0053-6
Taking the importance of local action as a starting point, this analysis traces the treatment of participation of local and community actors through the three international frameworks for disaster risk reduction (DRR): the Yokohama Strategy and Plan of Action for a Safer World, the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005–2015, and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR). The study finds a concerning shift away from valuing local community input and toward promoting technological advances. Community actors went from valued partners with their own expertise and relevant beliefs in Yokohama Strategy to “aid recipients” to whom tailored risk information must be transmitted (in SFDRR). This shift may reflect the top-down nature of negotiated international agreements or a broader shift toward investments in technological solutions. Whatever the cause, given widespread recognition of the importance of local knowledge and participation and growing recognition of the importance of intra-community differences in vulnerability, it suggests the need for reconsideration of both the discourse and the practice of involving community-level actors in DRR planning and implementation.
The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and Persons with Disabilities
Laura M. Stough, Donghyun Kang
2015, 6(2): 140-149. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0051-8
In this paper, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR) is evaluated with respect to its ramifications for persons with disabilities. In the SFDRR, persons with disabilities were referenced either directly or indirectly as part of the preamble, the guiding principles, the priorities for action, and the role of stakeholders. In addition, the 2015 World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, during which the SFDRR was adopted, incorporated explicit recommendations toward a disability-accessible and inclusive environment not evident in previous disaster risk reduction conferences. The infusion of disability-related terms and concepts such as accessibility, inclusion, and universal design throughout the SFDRR document was significant. These concepts, which have their origin in disability studies, are used in the SFDRR document to refer to the needs of all in disaster, not only to people with disabilities. These disability-related concepts will now serve the field of disaster risk reduction as important overarching disaster-related principles. The authors conclude that the SFDRR has firmly established people with disabilities and their advocacy organizations as legitimate stakeholders and actors in the design and implementation of international disaster risk reduction policies.
Youth Participation at the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction
Lydia Cumiskey, Tam Hoang, Sachi Suzuki, Claire Pettigrew, Moa M. Herrgård
2015, 6(2): 150-163. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0054-5
This article summarizes and analyzes the Children & Youth Forum and youth participation in the process during and leading up to the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR) in 2015. An organizing committee consisting of international students and young professionals brought together around 200 young professionals and students from around the globe to exchange ideas and knowledge on reducing disaster risk, building resilient communities, and advocating for the inclusion of youth priorities within the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR). The knowledge exchange during the Forum was structured around a Toolbox for Resilience that connected to the SFDRR section on Priorities for Action. This article presents the outcomes of these young people’s participation in the disaster risk reduction capacity building events and policy-making, as well as the follow-up actions envisioned by the young participants of the Forum. The voices of the younger generation were heard in the SFDRR and young people are ready to expand their actions for the framework’s effective implementation. Young people call on technical experts, donors, NGOs, agencies, governments, and academia to partner with them on this journey to create a more resilient tomorrow together.
The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction: Renewing the Global Commitment to People’s Resilience, Health, and Well-being
Amina Aitsi-Selmi, Shinichi Egawa, Hiroyuki Sasaki, Chadia Wannous, Virginia Murray
2015, 6(2): 164-176. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0050-9
The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR) is the first global policy framework of the United Nations’ post-2015 agenda. It represents a step in the direction of global policy coherence with explicit reference to health, development, and climate change. To develop SFDRR, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) organized and facilitated several global, regional, national, and intergovernmental negotiations and technical meetings in the period preceding the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR) 2015 where SFDRR was adopted. UNISDR also worked with representatives of governments, UN agencies, and scientists to develop targets and indicators for SFDRR and proposed them to member states for negotiation and adoption as measures of progress and achievement in protecting lives and livelihoods. The multiple efforts of the health community in the policy development process, including campaigning for safe schools and hospitals, helped to put people’s mental and physical health, resilience, and well-being higher up the disaster risk reduction (DRR) agenda compared with the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005–2015. This article reviews the historical and contemporary policy development process that led to the SFDRR with particular reference to the development of the health theme.
Bangkok to Sendai and Beyond: Implications for Disaster Risk Reduction in Asia
Ranit Chatterjee, Koichi Shiwaku, Rajarshi Das Gupta, Genta Nakano, Rajib Shaw
2015, 6(2): 177-188. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0055-4
The recently concluded World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR) in Sendai, Japan and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR) have set renewed priorities for disaster risk reduction (DRR) for the next 15 years. Due to Asia’s high exposure to natural hazards, the implications of the new SFDRR have major significance for the future development of the region. The 6th Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (AMCDRR), held in Bangkok in 2014, was a regional preparatory meeting for the WCDRR, and proposed various targets and indicators for DRR in Asia. The AMCDRR recommended inclusion of these goals in the SFDRR. This study focuses on the WCDRR negotiations, particularly outcomes that affect four major groups: local authorities; children and youth; science and technology; and business and industry. An analysis is undertaken of the overlaps and gaps in the outcomes of the 6th AMCDRR and other preceding conferences that fed into the WCDRR. A set of recommendations has evolved from this examination for consideration at the upcoming 7th AMCDRR in 2016. The areas that merit consideration in the upcoming AMCDRR 2016 are: (1) development of baseline data and quantitative indicators for monitoring progress in DRR; (2) creation of a common stakeholder platform; (3) construction of city typologies for consideration in all future local level planning; (4) promotion of a culture of safety by linking large enterprises with small and medium enterprises; and (5) exchange and sharing of information and databases between regions at all scales.
Mainstreaming Early Warning Systems in Development and Planning Processes: Multilevel Implementation of Sendai Framework in Indus and Sahel
Asim Zia, Courtney Hammond Wagner
2015, 6(2): 189-199. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0048-3
The third UN World Congress on Disaster Risk Reduction, held in Sendai, Japan in March 2015, agreed on a new framework to guide disaster risk reduction policy and practice for the next 15 years. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (SFDRR) leaves important implementation issues unspecified and potentially creates both problems and opportunities for complex, multilevel governance systems in coping with hazards and disastrous events. Early warning systems (EWS), if built into the mainstream of planning for development and disaster relief and recovery, could present a significant opportunity to realize many SFDRR goals. We explore the complexities of using hydrometeorological EWS to prepare for drought and flood disasters in the densely populated communities of Pakistan’s Indus River Basin in contrast to the African Sahel’s less densely settled grasslands. Multilevel governance systems are often dominated by a top-down, technocentric, centralized management bias and have great difficulty responding to the needs of peripheral and vulnerable populations. People-centered, bottom-up approaches that incorporate disaggregated communities with local knowledge into a balanced, multilevel disaster risk management and governance structure have a dramatically better chance of realizing the SFDRR goals for disaster risk reduction.
New Sendai Framework Strengthens Focus on Reducing Disaster Risk
Margareta Wahlström
2015, 6(2): 200-201. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0057-2
What to Expect After Sendai: Looking Forward to More Effective Disaster Risk Reduction
Sálvano Briceño
2015, 6(2): 202-204. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0047-4
The Letter and the Spirit of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (a.k.a. HFA2)
Michael H. Glantz
2015, 6(2): 205-206. doi: 10.1007/s13753-015-0049-2