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Establishment of Digital Innovation Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction

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Climate change, urbanization, and unpreparedness continue to significantly impact human lives, primarily through natural hazards. These challenges align with several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), notably SDG 6 on clean water and sanitation, SDG 11 on sustainable cities and communities, and SDG 13 on climate action. Despite the critical nature of these issues, disaster risk reduction (DRR) efforts have largely been confined to the public sector and international organizations such as the United Nations, and academic institutions. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction calls for actions by all stakeholders, yet private sector involvement and investment in this area remain notably absent. Engaging the private sector and fostering innovation investments can be pivotal in helping the most vulnerable populations, particularly in Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS), to build resilience without necessarily following the traditional development paths taken by other regions. Similar to how private investments have significantly advanced public goods in health and energy industries, the same approach can be applied to DRR and climate change adaptation (CCA).

Barriers to Private Sector Investment in DRR and CCA

Several barriers hinder the private sector from investing in DRR and CCA. Firstly, it is challenging to accurately capture the needs of users, whether they are governments or individuals. Without a clear understanding of these needs, developing effective solutions is difficult. Secondly, there is a struggle to access existing data on natural hazards and socio-economic factors, which is crucial for building robust and relevant products. Additionally, there is a lack of established markets for DRR and CCA solutions. While small, localized markets are emerging, there is no substantial global market, making it less attractive for private investors to engage in this sector.

The Idea: Developing a Digital Innovation Hub

To address these barriers and foster a market for DRR and CCA, the idea is to develop a comprehensive digital innovation hub consisting of three platforms with several key components. First, it would feature a digital platform of open data, providing accessible and comprehensive data on natural hazards and socio- economic factors. This would be complemented by a digital platform for co-working spaces, enabling stakeholders to collaborate and innovate together, and a digital library of innovative solutions, showcasing successful initiatives and technologies.

Another critical component of this hub would be a digital marketplace. This marketplace would facilitate matchmaking between stakeholders, including governments, donors, private sectors, and academics, by aligning needs with potential solutions. It would act as a hub where demand meets supply, thus fostering collaboration and investment.

Moreover, the hub would develop a strategy or white paper outlining the current trends and opportunities in innovation for DRR and CCA. This document would serve as a guide for stakeholders to understand the landscape and identify areas with the greatest potential for impact.

Finally, to jumpstart the market, the initiative would include pilot projects. These projects would demonstrate the viability and effectiveness of private sector investment in DRR and CCA, thereby attracting more investors and scaling the market.

In summary, by creating a digital innovation hub, we can address the barriers to private sector investment in DRR and CCA, create a vibrant market, and foster the development of innovative solutions that enhance resilience and adaptation to climate change.

UNESCO therefore seeks individuals or organizations with experience in innovative solutions, digitalplatforms and DRR to develop the roadmap to create an innovative digital hub on DRR and CCA.

The individual or organization shall be expected to develop the following deliverables:

Define Objectives and Scopes:

  • Identify the primary goals and purposes of the digital hub.
  • Outline the specific challenges or issues that the digital hub will address.

Draft Framework of the digital innovation hub:

  • Review and analyze existing relevant platforms and to gather best practices and lessons learned.
  • Develop a framework for the digital hub, detailing its structure, roles, and responsibilities.
  • Include mechanisms for stakeholder engagement and collaboration.

Draft Work Plan:

  • Create a detailed work plan for the digital innovation hub, outlining key activities, milestones, and timelines.
  • Identify and categorize key industries that will be involved in the development and implementation of the hub.
  • Set a schedule that aligns with major project phases and deadlines.

Identify Key Stakeholders and Partners:

  • Conduct a thorough stakeholder analysis to identify key players from diverse sectors, ensuring representation from different regions to capture a global perspective.
  • Compile a list of potential partners from various domains, including government agencies, private sector entities, academic institutions, and non-governmental organizations.
  • Research and list international events, conferences, and forums related to the innovation on DRR and CCA scheduled for 2024 and 2025.

Engage and Finalize Partnerships:

  • Reach out to identified major partners to discuss collaboration opportunities and gather input on the proposed work plan and scopes.
  • Adjust the work plans and scopes based on feedback received from potential partners.
  • Draft and finalize Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) or other formal agreements to solidify partnerships.

Finalize Objectives, Scopes, and Work Plan:

  • Refine and finalize the objectives and scopes of the task force based on discussions and agreements with partners.
  • Ensure the work plan is comprehensive, realistic, and aligned with the overall goals of the digital innovation hub.

Develop Roadmap to Launch:

  • Create a detailed roadmap outlining the steps and milestones leading up to the launch of the digital hub.
  • Include timelines, key activities, and responsible parties for each phase of the development process.
  • Ensure the roadmap is clear, actionable, and designed to facilitate the successful launch and operation of the digital innovation hub.


  • All the tasks above should be done by the end of December 2024.


  • Excellent knowledge of English (written and spoken).

How to submit the proposal

To submit the proposal, please send your proposal with the schedule and budget plan together with your organization/individual's information and past similar experience to before 19 June 2024 (midnight)

Please note that only pre-selected proposals will be contacted.


Job description 0.2 MB, PDF, English

Document links last validated on: 31 May 2024

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