The first edition of the Key Recommendations for a Strengthened use of Science and Technology in Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas and the Caribbean, presents findings regarding the effect and significant role of scientific and technological research on strengthening the implementation and formulation of sound DRR policies.
In recent years, countries in Latin America and the Caribbean substantially improved their disaster response capacity. However, given the need to further place DRR at the center of the sustainable development agenda / the need to effectively address the underlying factors of risk, efforts should instead focus on the creation and implementation of integrated disaster risk management strategies. To such end, widespread consensus within the international DRR community points towards the need for comprehensive and sustained use of science and technology (S&T) in practice and policymaking.
The recently developed Regional Assessment Report on Disaster Risk in Latin America and the Caribbean (RAR 2021) calls for a fundamental shift in understanding disaster risk and its drivers, as well as for enhanced governance to reduce them. Other concerns include insufficient availability of information on risk and disasters, the need to tackle disaster root causes, the urgency to promote sustainable investments in corrective and prospective risk management, and a call for better understanding and management of disaster risk in urban areas. All these issues require a transition in the focus of governance, from disasters to disaster risk management that guarantees a profound impact on development (UNDRR, 2021).
In combination with pragmatic experience, these insights reinforce the need for a strengthened science and technology community (S&TC) in policymaking. Such integrated approach for disaster risk management will likely bridge the gap between science, policymaking, and implementation. Hence, this document outlines a series of recommendations for a Strengthened use of Science and Technology in Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas and the Caribbean.