Case studies

ARISE members are constantly working to build disaster resilience at the local, regional, and global levels. This is always best done in partnership with those who may be at risk of a disaster. Those at the local level typically know their risk and resilience from decades, if not centuries, of local exposure to hazards.

ARISE provides a unique opportunity to bring perspectives from its members to combine with local knowledge to create powerful solutions for disaster risk reduction. Further, information can travel "upward" from the local level through the ARISE network to disseminate best practices. These case studies, organized by the seven ARISE Themes, offer solid examples of how partnerships can enhance disaster risk resilience.

 

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

AECOM (provider of services for infrastructure projects) was engaged by the Tasmanian Department of Premier and Cabinet Climate Change Office (TCCO) to develop a suite of online and printable resources to help Tasmanian businesses across a range of sectors develop practical and implementable strategies to prepare their business for disasters. The resources, when combined, can form a comprehensive emergency management plan for the business, and can be used as individual resources, depending on the business needs.

The case study highlighted the following lessons learned:

  • Business need proactive guidance and support to navigate and complete the templates; primary producers in particular.
  • Cooperation between government and the private sector is required to support businesses to use the materials.
  • Within the private sector, industry groups and peak bodies are central to support resilience planning, including opportunities to work with the private sector to promote the materials.
  • The importance of 'community-led' response during disasters was critical to recovery.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

This study evaluated  approaches to developing a more connected urban water cycle. North West Cambridge is a new greenfield development consisting of 3,000 new homes and a 100,000m2 research and office space on the edge of Cambridge, UK. Since 2008, AECOM coordinated with the University of Cambridge to bring forward this groundbreaking development from concept design to achieving planning permission and post planning consents. Growth in this part of the UK is likely to put pressure on scarce water resources with potential impacts on wider ecosystems.

When it does rain, the increase in impermeable surfaces associated with new development on what was a greenfield site increased the rate of run‐off, which increases the risk of downstream flooding an urban pollution. Climate change, including longer periods of drought in the summer and stronger, more unpredictable storms in the winter is likely to exacerbate these challenges.

There are two key lessons learnt from the opportunity to undertake a mass water balance for North West Cambridge: 

  • Developing a more integrated approach to urban water management can help to reconnect the water cycle, reducing potable water demand as well as reducing flood risk and pressure on waste water networks. 
  • Developing a site‐wide approach delivered the economies of scale required to make non‐potable supply viable.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

Alameda County in the San Francisco Bay Area contains valuable transportation and community assets for the region, including major connecting bridges, freeways, a port and airport, homes and businesses. The Metropolitan Transportation Commission, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Bay Conservation and Development Commission and the California Department of Transportation partnered on a project to assess adaptation options for a subset of key transportation assets vulnerable to sea level rise.

As part of the project inundation maps showing six different sea level rise scenarios were developed, as well as a detailed asset inventory, 125 potential adaptation strategies to reduce the vulnerabilities of these assets to flooding, and five more detailed concept designs including living levees, a breakwater, and governance strategy.

The case study highlights the following lessons learned:

  • It can be hard to find detailed asset information that can be useful to inform a vulnerability assessment (such as condition, previous failure, usage) and time can be wasted trying to locate it. 
  • There is a balance between collecting sufficient data at an early stage to help decide which assets are most vulnerable and at risk, and then once those assets are identified, collecting further data to help develop appropriate adaptation strategies. 

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

Temperatures in less than one in six English classrooms were considered adequate throughout the year, according to the first Building Schools for the Future programme report. Overheating is of particular concern as it can not only reduce educational performance but also undermine the health and well‐being of occupants.

AECOM with Rex Proctor and Edward Cullinan Architects undertook this study for Partnerships for Schools (the former national schools delivery body for England). Through the modelling of different types of climate mitigation measures, under different climate scenarios, the project developed costed design, operation and management guidance for different types of schools. Despite limited budget for both new and refurbished schools, England’s Education Funding Agency has introduced more stringent thermal management specifications within contractual arrangements for new and retrofit school projects.

The case study highlighted the following lessons learned:

  • Climate change‐related risks to be addressed in a design should be agreed as early as possible and assessments then carried out immediately.
  • Certain design adaptations may have no or low impact on overall construction costs.
  • Early client agreement is necessary about the extent to which each climate change related risk should be mitigated, as constrained by the available budget.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

In the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan in 2013, a majority of the designated evacuation centers (mostly in the form of school buildings or public gymnasiums) were severely damaged. In the drive to build back better and safer, the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation and its partners aimed to build safer and more structurally sound, dual‐purpose evacuation centers that are hazard‐adaptive and sensitive to the needs of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), women, and children.

This case study highlights the following lessons learned:

  • It was important for the team to conduct tests such as soil analysis and hazard analysis to ensure that the building will be safe during  disasters.  
  • Building  a  hazard‐adaptive  and  needs‐sensitive evacuation center is not enough. Programs that enhance community involvement (disaster risk reduction and management  capacity‐building)  were  also  crucial  in helping  the  overall  capacity  of  the  municipality  to respond to disasters.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

 

 

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

The 100 Resilient Cities (100RC) project is dedicated to helping cities around the world become more resilience to the physical, social and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st Century. The 100RC definition of resilience includes not just the shocks but also the stresses that weaken the fabric of a city on a day to day or cyclical basis.

Lessons learned identified in this publication are:

  • The Chief Resilience Officer's (CRO) position is placed ideally in the Mayor's office or equivalent that has an overarching role in the city.
  • This generally helps the CRO to work effectively across other departments, avoiding siloing challenges.
  • Visible support from the Mayor or City Manager is also vital.
  • This cross cutting thinking can be key to solving multiple challenges with one solution in a cost effective way.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, SM Prime Holdings, Inc.
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

SM Prime’s (shopping mall company) commitment in building safer and disaster‐resilient malls was considered in SM Cabanatuan by consciously and decisively designing the mall to allow overflowing creek floodwater during extreme floods into the mall property. The lower ground structure also serves as a temporary flood catchment which minimized the level of flood in the community.

The recorded lessons learned are:

  • SM Prime saw the opportunity of doing business while considering the risk.
  • The additional 10% in costs to build a disaster resilient mall were more than recouped in avoided losses.
  • SM Prime gained more trust with its stakeholders because it anticipated the risk and took action based on their needs, rendering a sustainable competitive advantage.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, SM Prime Holdings, Inc.
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

SM City Marikina is an elevated mall built on top of stilts. It is a 6‐hectare mall property located within the Marikina River Watershed, a known flood‐prone area. In 1977, the World Bank identified this zone as high‐risk, and should be prepared for floods and earthquakes.

The identified lessons learned in this publication are:

  • Disaster preparedness and proper planning are essential to achieving reduced risks brought
    about by natural and man‐made calamities.
  • Investing in disaster resilient buildings and properties can greatly help avert potential loss of life, business and reputation.
  • The mall gained more trust with its stakeholders because it ancitipated the risk and took action, resulting in a sustainable competitive advantage.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

Working in a post‐ disaster scenario in the Province of Leyte, the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF) designed an early recovery program with national government agencies, local government units, and international NGOs. This program is leveraging the capabilities of each organization in support of micro and small enterprises and the normalization of the local supply chain.

Key lessons learned include:

  • The Post Disaster Needs Assessment provided program partners an idea on the best way to support affected communities and livelihood outside of relief packages.
  • In helping jumpstart early recovery, people were provided the opportunity to help themselves and regain their businesses.
  • This early recovery activity is stabilizing market prices of basic commodities and deterring opportunities that prey on the vulnerability of the community's situation.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

Since 2010, AECOM (provider of services for infrastructure projects) has assisted the Australian Department of Defence with understanding risks to its assets due to climate change‐induced disasters across Australia. The process involved a risk assessment and prioritisation of sites, followed by detailed site asssessments.

Three key lessons are identified in this publication:

  • The value of a staged approach to ensure resources are targeted to priority sites of greater risk.
  • The benefit of generating, with project stakeholders, a Site Assessment Methodology and Framework, tailored to specific project needs.
  • The importance of tailoring information to user needs. For instance, to support ongoing internal communication, a suite of products/reports were developed.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, IBM Corporation
Publication date:01/07/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

Stamford (USA), Puerto Montt (Chile) and Luanda (Angola) cities held workshops with multiple stakeholders to complete the United Nations City Disaster Resilience Scorecard. The workshops were notable in identifying both technical requirements, and also gaps in understanding and communications between different agencies.

These gaps, if left unaddressed, could easily have led to a compromised disaster response, or to development and other activity that would have weakened resilience in the longer term. The workshops were held over one or two days and were facilitated by IBM and, in the case of Stamford, by the engineering company AECOM.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.

Source(s):United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, AECOM
Publication date:30/06/2016
Number of pages:2 p.

To demonstrate risk reduction from disaster‐resistant building codes, FEMA assigned AECOM to develop practical losses avoided studies (LAS) using HAZUS, FEMA’s popular GIS‐based community loss modeling platform. HAZUS quantifies impacts to structures, contents, infrastructure systems and economic sectors for flood, wind and seismic hazards. The engineering basis of HAZUS allows simulation of improved disaster performance from strengthened hazard provisions in the International Building Codes (I‐Codes) launched in 2000. Particular structure types and features are modeled for residential, commercial and industrial. HAZUS LAS results quantify how Post‐2000 construction under I‐Codes reduces community, state and regional risk.

This case study is one of a series produced by members of ARISE, the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies.