Key issues for discussion and suggested improvements in format in subsequent rounds
  • Dear Colleagues,

    In my opening remarks, I had announced 4 questions to be addressed in the opening first round from 27 Aug to 7 Sept. The fourth question in my announcement read “What are the key issues you would like to discuss in subsequent rounds?"

    As I observed earlier, like all good conversations, we have got ahead of ourselves, and many comments and discussion so far have already suggested themes for subsequent rounds. We also got some interesting ideas on formats and mini conversations. Keeping this in mind we have broadened the scope slightly. This is now the heading and theme of this thread of discussions i.e.

    “What key issues would you like to discuss in subsequent rounds of this first dialogue? What improvements, if any, in format and outreach of this dialogue, would you like to suggest to strengthen the consultation process?"

    Let me re-emphasize the explanation given by UNISDR in its announcement message “the first dialogue will continue over continue over a period of 3 months till 30 November 2012. This first dialogue is planned to be structured in five rounds, each spanning a period of two weeks, with each round having a specific theme and set of four questions.”

    We are now coming back to the basic question of what you would like to see addressed in these four periods of discussions of two weeks each. Here is your further opportunity to shape the coming three months, and give us practical and creative ideas on how to link the online dialogue to in person discussion and other meetings. These could include regional and national meetings that discuss and decide on DRR, enhanced national preparedness and recovery capacity building; as well as the regional and national workshops on the HFA progress reports and those specifically planned as part of the consultation process on the post 2015 DRR Framework.

    Let us also consider ways to connect with, inform and be informed by the other “post 2015” conversations and processes on MDGs, SDGs, Climate Change, Urban agenda, Energy, Water, Food security, Oceans, Consumption, Education and Health for all, Migration, Forestry, Children’s rights, Women’s empowerment, Indigenous peoples’ movement, Inequality, Peace building and Conflict resolution……..,

    Feel free to also share your views on format of the online platform and these dialogues, and the link between the platform and other tools and formats of communication and social media.

    So too, there is the emerging idea that many have shared in the conversation so far, of mini conversations on themes, with each of these being multi-sector and multi-stakeholder. What are your views on this? Are the individuals and institutions who are part of this and other dialogues, interested in participating and/or co-leading /co –contributing to these mini conversations?



    Your reactions and inputs to any or all of the above, or any related matter under this heading are welcome.


    Loy Rego
  • Dear Participants

    Many thanks to Margareta and the team at UNISDR for opening up this space to move forwards. Also hats off to Loy for his facilitatory skills.

    We'd like to contribute from the Global Network for Disaster Reduction by referring back to some of the findings of Views from the Frontline, setting the context for answering the question about key issues. We will also mention our plans for contributing to this dialogue.

    Background and Context

    Views from the Frontline ( is a participatory multi-stakeholder engagement process designed to monitor, review and report on critical aspects of the implementation of the HFA. Whilst the detailed findings, gathered from over 20,000 respondents in 69 countries are included in the reports at the weblink above, key findings are that:

    1. There is a continuing gap between national level policy development and planning, and local level implementation (VFL 2009)

    2. The experience of people at local level is that disaster losses continue to increase (VFL 2011)

    3. The critical aspects of the framework which need to be addressed are concerned with governance and with underlying risk factors, balancing the emphasis on preparedness and response.

    4. Action at the Frontline case studies gathered from 60 locations ( show that local participation in knowledge creation and governance is a key driver for progress

    5. Recent discussions between network members in online discussions and regional meetings highlight the potential for strengthening of local contributions to address underlying risks where they are able to participate and form partnerships for action and learning

    6. VFL 2013, which is just getting underway, therefore focuses on promoting local action and learning.

    7. VFL 2013 aims to demonstrate that community resilience, based on local participation in knowledge creation and governance should be at the heart of the HFA and related frameworks

    Suggestions for Key issues

    1. Other assessments of the HFA, as well as VFL, could be drawn together to identify clearly what has worked effectively and what should be redesigned. A discussion or a thematic group on this would support many of the other discussions

    2. Underlying risk factors have been highlighted by VFL and also mentioned by several contributors to these debates. In our discussions we have mentioned that these concern the whole range of factors which impact people at the Frontline - not only environmental but socio/economic. Work on how to strengthen the focus on these would be great.

    3. A dialogue on contribution of the local level to knowledge creation and governance would be valuable. As someone said the term 'indigenous knowledge' is often used as a way of marginalising such knowledge, whereas our own case studies and many others show that local knowledge is often much more accurate, and a better basis for action than remote de-contextualised plans. It deserves to be given value and placed alongside other sources of knowledge. In terms of governance there is also rich evidence that where there are genuine partnerships between different stakeholders in risk governance this leads to better planning and action than situations where people at local level are shut out.

    4. A dialogue on the emerging understanding of multi-risk resilience and the need for breaking down the silos between different frameworks concerned with DRR, Climate Change Adaptation, Sustainability and Development Goals would be valuable in considering the interaction of the post-2015 HFA and related networks.

    5. The post-2015 HFA is a global framework applying to rich and poor countries. A specific focus should be given to the poorest and most vulnerable groups in developing countries. It makes sense for a successor framework to be grounded in the local realities recognising the interlinked issues of vulnerability, poverty and conflict. Vulnerability and exposure to risk of all kinds are not accidents of fate - they are a result of specific power relations and policy decisions which are often discriminatory, exclusive and unjust. An effective framework should support effective change processes mindful of the power dynamics at play, having accountability at its core.

    6. UNISDR is organising regional discussions this autumn and these face-to-face opportunities are really important. We encourage people to join these, and will organise complementary civil society discussions at some of them, particularly in Asia and Latin America. We are also launching an online discussion at the beginning of October and will circulate details to this forum so we can provide a specific civil society contribution. Building on this we are planning a global Civil Society workshop for early 2013 to draw together evidence and thinking from the widest possible spectrum of practitioners and thinkers, generating recommendations for the upcoming frameworks.

    We'd value all ideas and advice on this!

    Best wishes

    Terry Gibson
  • Colleagues in the DRR world:

    First of all I excited and happy this is becoming quite a dynamic interaction of ideas, opinion and sharing of experiences. Here is my take on the question raised by the facilitator.

    Regarding key issues some of these I have mentioned already in the earlier post.

    1. Factors affecting the performance of the HFA in countries- this will likely surface themes like policy and governance issues as well as information and technology issues in determining level of risks at country level

    2. Cases of HFA in action will be an interesting theme to provide some grounding to the key themes in the HFA. The cases can be in area of government policy on DRR, community-level risk reduction action and its interaction with national policies and the like.

    3. The role of civil societies in ensuring the implementation of the HFA. I think the successes and maybe failures of the HFA can be attributed to the level of engagements by civil society in the work towards risk reduction. For instance in the Philippines, the civil society alliances on DRR and CCA have been significantly contributed to the formulation and adoption of national laws that many provisions have been sensitive to the current political culture of the Philippines. For instance the previous policy on "calamity" fund utilization of many local governments have been amended through the advocacy of CSOs to make it more DRR focused and more of sustainable fund. CSO's have been in a frontline also in innovating tools on risk assessments and planning that helped governments in their compliance to HFA agreements. A sub-theme for this can be about looking at the private sector's role in DRR. The private sector although operating with a different paradigm, have been a significant player also in DRR work in the Philippines. In the Philippines, there exist a private sector organization working on disaster response and DRR--the Corporate Network for Disaster Response. They will have plenty of cases as to how their sector is contributing to the DRR.

    4. Another interesting theme I think is mainstreaming DRR. By mainstreaming, this means that risk assessments and risk reduction thinking is considered in development planning, budgeting and even designing development programs on health, education and livelihoods. My organization, the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR) have been working bringing DRR into developing rural and urban health systems making these more robust thereby making it resilient to hazards and the uncertainty of climate change shocks. We are also working on safer schools by integrating DRR in education systems. Lastly, there have been work also on ecosystems management linking it with DRR. The Partners for Resilience (PfR)--an alliance of Dutch-based international NGOs have been implementing this work for about 3 years now.

    5. Lastly, I am supporting the idea of having discussions on balancing indigenous knowledge with conventional knowledge on DRR and CCA. People (at least in my countyr, the Philippines) have been visited with typhoons in about 19 typhoons in a year and through the decades--this has allowed communities to learn and develop their own approaches to keeping themselves and their communities safe. In our work in Community-managed DRR--we assist and work with communities in developing these time-tested knowledge on risk reduction and adaptation.

    Secondly, regarding formats:

    1. I think it would be good to divide the discussions according to themes and sub-themes. This will accomodate a broader audience and participants who might be more interested to discuss in a specific theme.

    2. Assigned facilitators per theme and come up with summaries and briefs of the major outcomes of the discussions to serve as "pit stops" where people read it through then decide on how to move forward the discussions.

    3. To bring in more ideas in to the table, I am forming a small discussion group within IIRR to seek also their ideas regarding the discussions and sharing these to the larger online discussions. Some of my colleagues do not have the time to participate directly online but they are very interested to contribute. I don't know if that will also work with the other participants.

    Cheers to all.

  • I support the suggestions above including the points raised by Loy Rego( the facilitator). However, I will suggest the discussion on vulnerable groups to get special attention and time. By vulnurable group I mean children, women, older people, and person with disabilities who are the most affected during and after disaster.

    On the other hand, the discussion should apply system thinking approach and seeing disaster from different direction and perspective. If we do not assess disaster risk from different angle by making thematic area specific discussions we may not get sustainable solution to the problem we are trying to address.

  • Dear organizers, I am back to drop a line.
    I am not sure if this has been mentioned by others, but I would like to suggest that specific themes be selected by the organizers so that all discussants can comment on. Without such a guide, everyone seems to focus on areas they like without engaging one another.

    I can suggest a few areas:
    1) Cost of disaster reduction and affordability by many poor nations
    2) Urban vulnerability (with more & more people living in cities)
    3) Gender issues in disaster reduction
  • Dear Loy, Wilson, Terry and others,

    I cannot agree more with Wilson and Terry. The key issue which keeps popping up is local relevance, ownership and involvement. However, this theme is not new. We have been talking about this literally for decades. I would like to refer you to what Paul Richards as well as Phil O'Keefe, Ken Westgate and Ben Wisner wrote in the mid-1970s. The issues they touched on then is not much different from where we are now and that relate to the disaster risks created through unequal political and economic systems. Try as we may, I am not convinced that we will significantly change the disaster risk profile of many at-risk communities if we do not tackle the system(s) which drives economic and social vulnerability. This is also true for private institutions and international organisations which "makes a living" off disaster risks.

  • The post-2015 HFA is a global framework applying to rich and poor countries. A specific focus should be given to the poorest and most vulnerable groups in developing countries. It makes sense for a successor framework to be grounded in the local realities recognising the interlinked issues of vulnerability, poverty and conflict. Vulnerability and exposure to risk of all kinds are not accidents of fate - they are a result of specific power relations and policy decisions which are often discriminatory, exclusive and unjust. An effective framework should support effective change processes mindful of the power dynamics at play, having accountability at its core.
  • Dear Colleagues,

    Thanks to M. Wahlstrom, UNISDR Boss and all for the great discussions going on here. I believe this will not be another talk shop.

    I agree completely with the clear distillation of facts with challenges and solutions put forward by Terry Gibson, Project Manager of Global Network for Disaster Reduction (GNDR). We may not end disasters, perhaps we can eradicate the very everyday disasters pounding and decimating rural poor communities.

    Like Terry said, 'The post-2015 HFA is a global framework applying to rich and poor countries. A specific focus should be given to the poorest and most vulnerable groups in developing countries. It makes sense for a successor framework to be grounded in the local realities recognising the interlinked issues of vulnerability, poverty and conflict. Vulnerability and exposure to risk of all kinds are not accidents of fate - they are a result of specific power relations and policy decisions which are often discriminatory, exclusive and unjust. An effective framework should support effective change processes mindful of the power dynamics at play, having accountability at its core.'

    We need to translate available knowledge and practices into policies with an enabling political will to make it work.

    Lets get this on.

    OTU, Uwem Robert. (OUR)
    African Youth Movement (AYM)
  • Dear Terry, Wilson, Uwem, and others in this thread,

    My thanks to all six of you active in this thread,for being very specific in your themes. These, together with themes earlier suggested, have given us no dearth of ideas on how to move ahead. I will be giving some recommendations to UNISDR based on your ideas as a whole and other offline discussions I have been having; and also drafting some proposed structure for the subsequent rounds. I would like to appeal to each of you and others interested to volunteer to be part of a small debrief cum review/planning team for getting both the big picture contours and some nuts and bolts of the next few rounds and an improved format right. So do let me know, either by indicating your interest online in this space or in an email, if you can voluntarily devote some time to this, and i will send you some drafts for comments.

    I also want to thank Terry, Wilson and Uwem for sharing with us some information on the organisations they work with and how they hope to continue these discussions within their organisations. This is important. I would encourage others to do the same.

    I would also encourage many who are participating in conferences where the same or related conversations are underway, and more so, others organising meetings in the next three months to to share the information through this forum. For example, can we hear more about the forthcoming African conference of ACDS that Dewald is organising? the 5th Asian Ministerial conference in October, and the Pacific DRM managers meeting later this month.

    That way these discussions can lead and feed in to your conference. But more importantly this forum can also be one vehicle for filtering into the post 2015 DRR discussions the rich ideas and experience from your conference outcomes, to inform the discussions that will take place at and in the run up to GPDRR 2013 and WCDR 2015.

    I look forward to hearing from more of you. To those already registered, who have not yet spoken on this page, do share your thoughts. To others visiting and reading these posts, do register soon, and have your say.


  • Developing countries are driven by the lack of economic and urban development, country-specific policy work and governance. Discussion for long-term vision of sustainable development, the significance and ‘concept of human security’ would be an opportunity to focus on strategies that support disaster risk reductions.
  • Dear Loy and all,

    Thanks ISDR and more thanks 'who contributed to have us such e-days for e-dialogue' come nearer from far. i would highly support Terry's comments and i would like to add some more ...

    The facts from the people at risks, naturally, do not really reflect all through different observations and reports. The vulnerability of the people at risk is something if someone never experienced, it is really very challenging to reflect through writing few sentences. This is my second time responding to this online dialogue. i will be trying to link with the grass root experiences with the reflected reports from different projects and programmes.

    From project perspectives:
    VFL 2009 and 2011 have made a vivid picture from the people who are experiencing disasters, living with disasters where many of them are living in disasters but they do not know that they are in a disaster. They believe it is because of a god is not happy so it happening.

    1. policy and strategies from the national levels are not translating into application due to limited resources (financial, technical and other) VFL 2009/11) at the local levels. as a result, risks is increasing......

    2. Due to limited resources and capacities, the disaster losses and damages are increasing. There is the mechanism to assess the 'loss' and 'damage' but there is no mechanism to assess the sufferings of the vulnerable people like women, elderly, disable, children and so on. So who are at the grass root level to reduce the damages and losses! So it is increasing (VFL 2011)

    3. There are many issues in the HFA just started (as i mentioned in my earlier comment) like how many countries we have the DRR Platforms! the statistics says, it's in few countries. Out of the 'few' National DRR Platforms, how many of the platforms are truly functioning for DRR. This is an example from HFA. Analytical results of such 'slowness' should be invested for further progress/initiatives. There may need some aspects of the framework to be re-designing for re-setting to address the local governance, underlying risk factors, balancing the emphasis on early warning system, preparedness and response. Of course, to see how to keep it on-going as the processes rather than the events. If DRR platforms in countries could be well-functioning many options could be opened to reduce to disaster threats.

    4. The experiences show, the 'people at risk' do not know 'they are at risk'; it is one of the key challenges. As a result, before the disaster happen, even government/CSOs initiates to evacuate but many people do not want to be evacuated. So, the mechanism should support those people to be aware to reduce their risks.

    5. i think, more focuses should be made on the learning and reflection programmes of the local actions. Like; 'adaptation' mechanism should support them to understand before doing. In this regard, the framework should emphasis on the approaches for learning and reflection so that the best practices can be 'show case' to demonstrate. There are many examples are around to present. It also helps to demonstrate 'what works and what does not'. Example: there some business insurance companies initiated for insurance to the poor. The 'buying and selling insurance' is the business of the rich people's; what about the poor are living with multi-hazards. is there any company can provide insurance??? I think, such so called insurance will be increasing the vulnerability rather than reductions. I think, it is one of the 'event' that does not work. If there is any mechanism that supports vulnerable people to be empowered with capacities (local knowledge with adaptation mechanism), work closely with local authorities, most of the vulnerable people become the decision makers at home and in the community, each and every community member have access to funding supports in case of any disasters or for their regular livelihoods - i think, then the risk can be reduced and can think about 'resilience' that may work.

    6. The proposed VFL 2013, is expected to promote local actions. The disaster is increasing, the extent of DRR efforts are comparing to the increasing disasters are poor. So the damages and losses are rising. In this regard, i think, the vfl 2013 will be focusing how to promote the local actions and learning is crucial. It would be greater if VFL can document some successful cases present for learning showing what works and what does not.

    Suggestions for Key issues

    1. ISDR should analyse the summarized the HFA progresses and focus what are successes, challenges and weakness. It should identify the root causes with propoer possible solutions on 'why it is success, why there is a challenge and there is a weakness' the root causes of each issue with direct and alternative way to work on it. There should be sort of consultations to figure out it.

    2. i would fully agree with Terry's comment on "Underlying risk factors have been highlighted by VFL and also mentioned by several contributors to these debates. In our discussions we have mentioned that these concern the whole range of factors which impact people at the Frontline - not only environmental but socio/economic. Work on how to strengthen the focus on these would be great."

    3. National platform should be strengthened to host the dialogues.Strong national platforms can support local platforms to organize dialogues. where CSOs can play vital roles. How to make it happen may be discussed. Once the local dialogue culture is established, many risk reduction issues will be reduced.

    4. Linkages of DRR and CCA and mainstreaming gender issues, sustainable development, green growth etc.

    5. i would fully agree to the HFA-2 appears with a common framework for developing and developed countries. "Specific focus should be given to the poor countries"- Terry. sounds realistic. "The key issue which keeps popping up is local relevance, ownership and involvement." -Dewald Van Niekerk; it is not new but it will never be old as well. i would agree with this issue to discuss more. HFA-2 should also cover the manmade disasters and attend it accordingly. how and what can be done, it should be discussed.

    6. it is great that UNISDR is organizing regional discussions. It should support more civil society organizations and vulnerable representatives to speak up and learn from their risks, vulnerability and sufferings.

    Thanks Loy again and all, and sorry for writing too long.
    Akhteruzzaman Sano
  • Dear Participants,
    Many thanks for UNISDR for this opportunity and Loy for your great effort to facilitate on this essential subject. I would like to contribute as member of IIRR in Africa Region and as a staff more engaged on DRR related assignments in our target areas.

    On this part of the dialogue, I believe a lot of great ideas have already been raised and, among others, I like to build on what Terry has pointed out. In our effort to train various stakeholders in DRR : program and project leaders, experts, field practitioners, community organization leaders, and the like; as well as while we were piloting a couple of DRR projects, most of our understandings are similar to VFL findings. There is a huge gap in policy, planning and implementation; disaster losses are continually increasing; there is still a huge dichotomy between development and emergency work; and much has not been done to enhance local level (real) participation. The issue of governance and accountability is still at the heart of the challenge.

    These being the realities on the ground, in regard to understanding and implementation of the HFA, some of the challenges should also be underscored. In this, the issue of understanding the concept, principles and dynamics of the HFA itself will come first. Is this instrument (HFA), understandable to all, is there a clear and supported mechanism in place for continued capacity building on the same. Are all of us on the same page when we talk about DRR? What do we mean by disaster, hazard, vulnerability, capacity and what is their relation? How should we carry out the risk analysis and come up with the risk reduction planning? What do we mean by DRR in the context of sustainable development? Etc. whenever we deal with these issues we experience lots of confusions.

    The second source of the challenge could be that the HFA itself seem to lack the definition of concrete deliverables at all levels. What is that the world, a region, country or state expected to deliver by the end of say 2015? The MDG, for example, has concrete measures such as increase in access to primary school, health facility, reduction of poverty, etc. What will happen for a country if she fails to meet on these deliverables is also pointed out. But in the case of HFA, these things are not clear or not given proper emphasis that they deserve. This situation also reflects badly on the requirments for the of international partnership for the buying in and implementation of the HFA. Still various multilateral and bilateral donors are operating in the same old way as it was before the HFA.

    These are just the few ones but there are more challenges that need to be uncovered in the course of the dialogue over the three months period.

    Fully agreeing on what Terry has presented regarding suggestions for key issues (I don’t want to repeat myself), in my view, therefore, the discussion at this very moment should be to deliberate on the direction that we should follow and the discussion formats we use for the next rounds. Here are my suggestions:

    • As the name itself implies, the HFA is more of for action. I think we need to cut high flying jargons, complex academic debates, to the level understandable to ordinary people. Let us be clear on what the success of the HFA were at all levels. For example, I see the great contribution of the framework in our thinking regarding “disaster prevention”. This is a huge shift in paradigm for we used to think “disaster is something of God ordained” and cannot be prevented. So let us see what were changed in terms of concept, principles, modalities of doing things and actions. I believe there are lots of individual, communities, institutional and country level case stories/human interest stories as well.
    • The second focus could be on what were the challenges encountered. Many issues have already been mentioned in the previous discussions. We need to consolidate those, get more of them and give it a shape.
    • Obviously, we need to come up with concrete recommendations on the way forward. I hope this stage would build on the great qualities of the HFA, at least in its format and flow, and all the suggestions need to be practically tested. As opposed to the 2004, when the HFA was issued, this time we have lessons learned from a good deal of small and big pilot DRR, emergency response, and integrated projects. We need therefore to refer to these published and unpublished evidences.
    • Regarding the discussion format, yes we can have thematic groups but with due care not to harm the multidisciplinary nature of DRR. Balance between the two needs to be there. Thematic groups may suggest on an important issue but that should again be tabled for discussion with people from other disciplines as well.

    Hope this helps

    Warm regards,

    Zerihu Lemma

  • Hi All,

    Local focus, breaking silos and linking DRR and resilience building to all aspects of development etc. are obviously important issues and challenges recognized by the background paper too. One of the key reasons for underperformance in these aspects and they remaining challenging could be “affordability issues” to poorer countries as Terry and others have point out. Should this be something that should be further discussed?
    Many developing or poorer countries depend on IFIs and Bilateral for development funding. Fundig that comes with quite strict guidance not necessarily or not always acknowledge or promote local focus, DRR and resilience building etc that the background paper identified and backed up by the discussion, , Macroeconomic indicators such as GDP, still showcase the status of a country, and improvement of which dictate access to much needed finances by the country. There are no macro indicators for measuring DRR, resilience building etc.; Governments have no incentives to improve it. Having acknowledged increase in disaster trends allocations for calamity funding are however going up.
    But it is obvious that possibly much more significant political implications may be preventing governments of poor countries mainstreaming DRR and being more bottom up and participatory rather than just "lack of affordability": while affordability is certainly an issues for a poor country.

    Vishaka Hidellage
  • I would like to see major attention given to the essential part that fresh water plays and has always played in the long term realization of all human goals including MDG's, Post 2015 goals and S.D goals. In Rio+20 this was given attention and Paragraph 122 of 'The Future We Want' states:

    "We recognize the key role that ecosystems play in maintaining water quantity and quality and support actions within the respective national boundaries to protect and sustainably manage these ecosystems."

    I would like to see the inclusion of the understanding and recognition of the key role that ecosystems, especially wetlands, mountains and forests, play in maintaining fresh water quantity and quality, and give focus to supportive efforts that protect, sustainably manage and restore these ecosystems added into the dialogues.

    I believe working together with a collective agenda much can be achieved and billions of lives can be saved.

  • Hi, this is Ismail Ozan Cilgin from Istanbul, Turkey, a geology engineer MSc, works in Beyaz Gemi Ltd. I'll try to represent my company in the process of dialogue. As Beyaz Gemi we are a social project agency with 18 years of experience in the field of educational consultancy, project design and management, awareness raising, research and development for risk reduction and safe life etc. Firstly, thank you very much for facilitating and coordinating this Online Dialogue, we are appreciate to be a part of this dialogue.
    We can begin our expectations from the consultation process towards the development of the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction by mentioning some of our suggestions for disaster risk reduction. We hope that these suggestions will provide positive contribute to the policies, strategies and solution suggestions that are developed and subsequently put forward in the process.
    • Disaster risk reduction studies of countries are performed by individuals/small number of individual and/or institutional effort

    o "Problems to be solved by others” prejudice constitute an impediment on disaster risk reduction efforts. In the disaster risk governance, starting with the public stakeholders that have relations with the activities that are based on the “adoption of responsibilities” and “privatization of risk”, the individuals and institutions are gradually transformed into the risk managers and active participants of the process involving the prevention and mitigation studies continued for the benefit of the community as a whole. These efforts emphasize the development of emergency management plans by combining the activities of public authorities, private organizations and individuals and creation of a common approach to this task for all stakeholders in the field of disaster risk reduction in order to be better prepared for the possible disasters. For example; disaster volunteers’ roles and responsibilities can be determined in the disaster emergency plans of their own country or religion. Also, it will be performed to provide participation to the studies by emphasizing the support areas to them for the studies that are carried out for the city. All stakeholders should be encouraged for ownership and widely participation by the themes/policies which provides to take action towards a common goal.

    • Spreading all informations about risk reduction to different community levels
    o Participatory learning and community based participation issues are the key points for disaster risk reduction. For this reason, informations that are produced by the international studies like Hyogo, Kyoto, etc., scientific researches and/or the other all relevant efforts can be transform into informations that are perceived and used by the community. It can be determined in which ways the informations share with the community by encouraging them for searching local learning models.

    • Emphasizing Risk Communication
    o The communication activities that are widely carried out around the world for the post disasters should also be encouraged for the mitigation and preparedness phases.

    • Transforming information into action / Ensuring community participation
    o Information which is not transformed into action in aspects of community, can be only perceived but learning cannot be occurred, so this action will be remained as only an idea. In order to transform information into action, information needs to be strengthen with practical experiences and also community-based projects needs to be realized related to disaster risk reduction. Learning methods should also be developed for community in according to aware them that these informations are useful in practice. Through the projects should be aimed to gain relevant experiences, enable creativity, and provide community participation to realization process by the real practices. It should be adopted that creativity and productivity make the relevant information about disaster risk reduction useable and meaningful. From this point of view, it should be taken into account that local learning methods may have positive effects on this subject.

    • The development of standardization and accreditation activities
    o We observe that disaster volunteering perception of community is affected by local volunteering perception and systems. It is also important weighting the standardization and accreditation studies of volunteers on disaster risk reduction as on humanitarian assistance and disaster response (INSARAG, FEMA, SPHERE etc.) for both an effective usage of volunteer sources in community-based disaster management and determination of roles and responsibilities with a common language. At this point, disaster volunteering activities need to be recognized in mitigation and preparedness phases. For example, within the scope of our pilot study conducted in Istanbul, volunteers who live in a housing estate competed based on preparing emergency preparedness file and their creativity skills were presented. Thus, active participation was provided for pre-disaster.

    • Reluctance in Research and Development (R&D) / Lack of resource
    o Density of the bureaucracy, which manages the internal dynamics of the countries and carries out its mechanisms are increasing reluctance of R&D studies. At the same time, rather than the fact of the cumbersome bureaucracy, lack of resource is another important factor for the reluctance of individuals and institutions about making time for R&D studies. The biggest handicap to invest in risk reduction is lack of receiving rapid results from disaster investments, but the value of the investments can only be understood aftermath of a disaster. In this regard;
    -The support ratio should be raised and incentives should be created by using the economic resources for disaster risk reduction
    - Make expansions towards the development of finance mechanisms which will be created for the efficient use of resources as regional partnerships and/or private enterprise capital fund
    - The success rate of research projects do not exceed 30 percent on global scale. For this reason, strategic projects and R&D studies which are difficult to be completed successfully but have high value-added should specially be supported.
    - In order to accelerate project support decisions, studies should be conducted, in mind that a technology developed one minute ago is a one minute old technology.

    • Sharing of guiding best practices
    • The creation of a common platform that studies related to disaster risk reduction and best practice implementations will be shared, and informations should be turned into usable by kept up to date. However, efficient usage should be provided with the creation of channels according to gain functionality of platforms at local level.

    • The lack of interest and participation to trainings at every level of community in some countries
    o People are especially motivated by approaches in which they themselves participate in a solution, and especially when they believe it is their own idea. Dire displays aftermath disaster, also with influence of media, instills the idea of “there is nothing to do” and the sense of external locus of control syndrome at community. This situation causes people do not see the truth of cover an important distance with only informing and awareness-raising activities. As a result, it causes the lack of interest and participation to trainings. By repeating to giving importance to public trainings guiding studies as a good example take place in public trainings and sense of achievement instilled at trainings, will raise the participation and interest of trainings. In this direction, the tools should be developed the community to be part of the solution.
    • Localization of global-scale decisions

    o During the phase of evaluation of global-scale decisions taken implementations at national basis, researches considering socio-economic and development levels of countries must be done. At the end of 2015 Hyogo Framework for Action the dynamics of local governments must be taken into consideration while developing guiding policies to country governments, local targets must be given in order to healthy processing of these policies. Furthermore, the strategy to put forward within the scope of disaster risk reduction activities, must be taken into account the approach of stakeholder participation which promoting the formation of local leadership at policy and approaches. Policy recommendations should be developed from local to global. For example, global aims as well as local aims can be determined.

    • Others
    o Emphasis on criterion of transparency and accountability about disaster risk reduction of countries.
    o Evaluation of controlling of carried out works of countries towards confessed strategies of countries by an independent organization within the scope of 2015 Hyogo Action process.
    oGiving place to strategy taken with an integrated approach and policy which could constitute an impediment to sustainable development such as energy, environment, water, etc. topics.

  • Hello All,
    I appreciate this wider-consultation process for Post-HFA Framework. In retrospection, i feel that HFA has helped in pushing the agenda of comprehensive Risk Reduction ... a significant step from Relief/Response. It is important to build on this momentum and achieve significant progress towards risk reduction. the Post-HFA should put more emphasis on the 'safer development' including climate risk reduction issues. Also, there is a need to move towards 'Goal' on the lines of MDGs to take stock of achievements at periodic interval during the Post-HFA implementation. Issue of 'governance' and 'environment' as highlighted in GAR-11 has provided very important direction and it can inform the Post-HFA Framework.
    Sudhir Kumar
  • Hi Loy and others,

    Thank you for this note Dewald. I also like the idea of this forum as a venue for sharing information and linking learning from our various work in various parts of the world. The understanding on "disaster risk profile" of countries can be tackled in two ways. Most of the time, risks are seen as a function of vulnerability that based on the socio economic political status of people and nations. The poorer and unstable a country the more at risk it is to disasters. But for some, risk can also be a function of the location of this countries. For instance even if we address the deeper socio eco political issues of the Philippines, by virtue of its location (within the Pacific Ring of Fire, proximity to the Pacific Ocean where typhoons are borne, etc)--it will always be in the highest ratings for disaster risk. But I think assessing risk needs to consider both thinking--social, economic and political instabilities and location as drivers for disaster risks and these have to be considered.

    Dear Loy, Wilson, Terry and others,

    I cannot agree more with Wilson and Terry. The key issue which keeps popping up is local relevance, ownership and involvement. However, this theme is not new. We have been talking about this literally for decades. I would like to refer you to what Paul Richards as well as Phil O'Keefe, Ken Westgate and Ben Wisner wrote in the mid-1970s. The issues they touched on then is not much different from where we are now and that relate to the disaster risks created through unequal political and economic systems. Try as we may, I am not convinced that we will significantly change the disaster risk profile of many at-risk communities if we do not tackle the system(s) which drives economic and social vulnerability. This is also true for private institutions and international organisations which "makes a living" off disaster risks.


    I think another issue that have been raised by some of the participants is the economics of disasters. There have been a lot of activities done to understand the cost of the disasters and these setting the stage for DRR to achieve the MDGs. But I think for a post HFA DRR I think the world needs to think of the financing DRR. My impression is that AID organizations from the developed countries have not failed in mobilising financial support to DRR but most of these are still spent on response work. In the Philippines for instance--since the country has been promoted to "middle income country" status, financial aid has been decreasing especially for DRR work. I am in the impression that maybe the vulnerability of the Philippines is based on socio-economic parameters and not by virtue of its high risk location in the world. Thus I think something must be done to look at the finance side of DRR and how countries have been moving around financial support around the world of DRR.


    PS: Loy, I am willing to assist in any way for the subsequent discussions on some themes. I can devote some volunteer time on this.


    posted on his request as he is busy in the field

    "Dear Loy,

    I have little time due to Assam work. But how can I not reply to you? May I make short points?

    One, where is 20 year thinking? Can we do without it? Who supports it? For what purpose? Or do we want to change the world with 3 year project cycles? This point came up in SREX process.

    Two, how can DRR accelerate growth? And what kind of growth? Economic? Green? Clean? This point came up in recent UNFCCC regional expert meeting on Key Issues in Addressing Loss and Damage Associated with Climate Change in Asia, Bangkok, August 27-29, 2012.

    Three, who is investing in leadership? Or are we molding our best talent for DRR project cycle management? And what will this cost us? As a sector? We found this in our ongoing work on District Disaster Management Plan with National Disaster Management Authority and Cordaid.

    Loy, do you think these three points make sense? If they do, do share.
    Do circulate the ideas I suggested. About Assam. We decided to work more in Assam. Many thanks.

    Warm regards.

    Mihir "
  • Dear Participants,

    We are now closing this thread of discussion which has now been open for 6 days.

    I will post a summary within a few days.


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