IDLP Newsletter 4 – August 2016



1. Message from the IDL Project Coordinating Team

2. Past Activities

• 4th Course on "International Disaster Response Law"

• Bartolini Speaks on the ILC Draft Articles at the ILS 2016 Session

• The 2016 edition of the IIHL Summer School on IHL Included a Lecture on International Disaster Law

• Bartolini Teaches IDRL Within the Grotius Centre's Summer School on IHL

• IDLP Members Lecture at the EU Disaster Response Law in an International Context Summer School

• Sant'Anna Conference "Addressing Recent Challenges in Public International Law: Responses from Italy and China"

• EU Red Cross Office Training and Dialogue on IDRL

• 3rd IIHL-IFRC International Disaster Law Course

• Casolari Speaks at the Conference "La governance degli Stati in crisi tra diritto e relazioni internazionali"

• Zorzi Giustiniani Speaks at the Conference "Disasters and Displacement in a Warming World: Current Realities, Legal Perspectives"

• Zorzi Giustiniani Invited to Lecture in Geneva on "Legal Environment for Humanitarian Action 2015-2016"

• International Conference "Protection of Persons in Times of Disasters: European and International Perspectives"

• The IDLP Assisted the ILC Special Rapporteur on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters in Drafting His Eight Report

3. Developments in Int'l Disaster Law 

Developments in International Law

• The International Law Commission Adopts on Second Reading the Draft Articles on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters

• UNISDR Launches "Sendai Seven" Campaign to Save Lives in Disasters

• Instabul Hosted the World Humanitarian Summit

• UNISDR Science and Technology Conference on the Implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030

Developments in EU Law and Practice

• Bruxelles Hosted the EU Resilience Forum 2016 on the Occasion of the European Development Days

• The EU-China Disaster Risk Management Project Further Develops for Preparing for Disasters

• The EU Established the EU Emergency Support to Deal with Exceptional Circumstances

• The EU Launched New European Medical Corps to Respond Faster to Emergencies

• In February 2016 London Hosted Major European Training Course for Disaster Response

Developments in Other Regional Organizations

• A Project for a Central South Caucasus Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction

• The Africa Working Group on Disaster Risk Reduction Gathered in Addis Abeba

4. IDL Publications

• New IDLP Publications

• IDL Publications

5. News

• Fifth Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction

• Sixth Africa Regional Platform and Fifth High-Level Meeting on Disaster Risk Reduction

• Sixth International Conference on Building Resilience 2016: Building Resilience to Address the Unexpected

• Eleventh International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage 2016

• Sixth International Disaster and Risk Conference (IDRC) on "Integrative Risk and Disaster Management: Towards Resilient Cities"

• Twenty-Fifth Regional Training Course on Community-Based Disaster Risk Reduction in a  Chancing Climate

• CARE Australia Launches Disaster Response Depot in Preparation for Humanitarian Emergencies


1. Message from the IDL Project Coordinating Team 

Dear reader,

Welcome to the fourth issue of the International Disaster Law (IDL) Project Newsletter.
Published two times a year, this Newsletter aims first to present the research and training activities carried out by the IDL Project members, and their planned future activities.

The Newsletter also includes a short survey on major developments occurred in the IDL domain at universal and regional level, as well as a selection of new IDL publications.
In particular, this issue makes reference to the work of the International Law Commission, which has finalized the text of the Draft Articles on the Protection of persons in the event of disaster.

Hoping you enjoy this Newsletter, and welcoming any feedback, we wish you a nice summer.

Warm Regards,

Flavia Zorzi Giustiniani
Giulio Bartolini
Federico Casolari
Emanuele Sommario


2. Past Activities

4th Course on "International Disaster Response Law"

Marina di Massa, 28-30 July 2016

For the fourth year in a row, the IDLP has joined forces with the Italian Red Cross to offer a Course on International Disaster Response Law for Italian Red Cross IHL Instructors. The Course offered participants an overview of both the theory and practice of IDRL, mixing frontal lessons with practical exercises and role-playing. Among other topics, this year's edition focused on the status of emergency personnel, the management of telecommunications in the event of disasters, the import-export regime applicable to emergency goods, the use of military assets to respond to disasters, and regional approaches to disaster response.

Stay tuned for next year application information here.

Bartolini Speaks on the ILC Draft Articles at the ILS 2016 Session

20 July 2016

Since 1965, the UN Office at Geneva (UNOG) organizes annually the International Law Seminar (ILS), with the aim of widening the knowledge of postgraduate students, young scholars, government officials and lawyers on the work of the International Law Commission (ILC). The 2016 ILS Session included a specific round-table devoted to the discussion of the ILC's Draft Articles on the Protection of Persons in Times of Disasters, featuring as speakers the ILC Special Rapporteur dr. Eduardo Valencia Ospina, Giulio Bartolini - IDLP Roma Tre unit coordinator - Tessa Kelly (IFRC), Arnold Pronto (UN Secretariat) and Marco Toscano Rivalta (UNISDR). The programme of the ILS 2016 Session can be accessed here.

The 2016 edition of the IIHL Summer School on IHL Included a Lecture on International Disaster Law

Sanremo/Geneva, 4-15 July 2016

The International Institute of Humanitarian Law , organized its yearly Summer School on International Humanitarian Law. This year's edition, included a lecture by Flavia Zorzi Giustiniani - IDLP coordinator - on "International Disaster Law". The Course, meant to improve the 50 participants' knowledge of international humanitarian law and human rights law, brought together high-level practitioners, experts and academics from all over the world. Take a look at the 2016 edition agenda here.

Bartolini Teaches IDRL at the Grotius Centre's Summer School on IHL

The Hague, 4-8 July 2016

Launched in 2016, the first edition of the Grotius Centre's Summer School on International Humanitarian Law and Theory and Practice, coordinated by Robert Heinsch, was organized in cooperation between the Grotius Centre Kalshoven-Gieskes Forum on International Humanitarian Law and the Netherlands Red Cross. Profiting of its unique location, the Summer School had among its teaching staff high-level speakers including Sir Christopher Greenwood (ICJ), Knut Dormann and Vincent Bernard (ICRC and Edotor in Chief of International Review of the Red Cross). On 7 July, participants got acquainted with IDL thanks to a lecture by Giulio Bartolini - IDLP Roma Tre unit coordinator - who offered an overview on the topic of "Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Response Law". The full program of the Summer School can be accessed here.

IDLP Members Lecture at the EU Disaster Response Law in an International Context Summer School

Milan, 4-8 July 2016

Four members of the IDLP - Federico Casolari, Emanuele Sommario, Flavia Zorzi Giustiniani and Tommaso Natoli - lectured at the  Summer School on "EU Disaster Response Law in an International Context" organized by the Università degli Studi di Milano. The 1-week course, aimed at offering participants students an overview of the interaction between the EU regime on one hand, and activities and instruments of cooperation for the prevention of and response to natural and man-made disasters established by other international institutions on the other. The event - supported by the Lifelong Learning Programme of the EU and academically coordinated by Prof. Giovanna Adinolfi (University of Milan) - combined frontal lessons with presentations by officials of NGOs and international organizations. The programme of the Summer School can be accessed here.

Sant'Anna Conference on "Addressing Recent Challenges in Public International Law: Responses from Italy and China"

Pisa, 4-5 July 2016

The Conference "Addressing Recent Challenges in Public International Law: Responses from Italy and China" was held at the Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna under the auspices of the Istituto di Diritto, Politica and Sviluppo (DIRPOLIS). It brought togheter scholars from Italy and China with the aim of exploring approaches of the two countries to face certain topical issues of International Law. One of the Panels, chaired by Professor Andrea De Guttry, was devoted to disaster response and hosted speeches by Prof. Emanuele Sommario (IDLP Sant'Anna Unit coordinator) on “China’s and Italy’s attitude towards the ILC’s work on the ‘Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters’”, and by Prof. Federico Casolari (IDLP Bologna Unit coordinator), on the topic "IDRL in Italy and China: Comparative Notes on Strengthening Legal Preparedness for International Disaster Response". Among the other topics discussed were "China’s Law and Practice on Prevention and Relief of Natural Disaster” and “China’s Response Management System on Disasters”. The full agenda of the conference can be accessed here.

EU Red Cross Office Training and Dialogue on IDRL

Bruxelles, 28 June 2016

The ‘Training and Dialogue on Law and Legal Issues in International Disaster Response at the Global and European Levels‘ was held at the Red Cross EU Office on 28 June 2016, jointly organized by the IFRC and the Red Cross EU Office.

The workshop provided an overview of international disaster response laws, rules and principles, as well as of some of the regulatory challenges faced in the context of humanitarian response. In the morning, the focus was mainly on international disaster response with examples from recent humanitarian contexts. This was followed by short presentations and deeper discussions around the latest relevant developments at the European level, including examples from EU Member States on their work on legal preparedness.

Prof. Giulio Bartolini – of the Roma Tre IDLP Unit – introduced the participants to the International Law Commission's Draft Articles on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters. The event was addressed at high-level personnel working for the EU, the UN, NGOs and other organizations. Among the participants were professionals working at the EU Parliament, DG ECHO, EEAS, WHO, UNOCHA, ICRC, IFRC and national Red Cross Societies.

3rd IIHL-IFRC International Disaster Law Course

Sanremo, 13-17 June 2016

Following a consolidated tradition, the 3rd Annual International Disaster Law Course took place in Sanremo, from 13 to 17 June 2016, organized and managed jointly by the International Institute of Humanitarian Law (IIHL) of Sanremo, the Disaster Law Programme of the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC), and the IDLP staff. The Course was directed by David Fisher (Coordinator, IFRC Disaster Law Programme), Tessa Kelly (IFRC Disaster Law Programme), and the IDLP Coordinating Team.

This year's faculty included Dr. Eduardo Valencia-Ospina (Special Rapporteur of the International Law Commission on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters), Professor Walter Kälin (former Representative of the Secretary-General on the human rights of internally displaced persons and Special Envoy of the Nansen Initiative), along with other distinguished speakers from academia and key international organizations.

The Course adopted a mixed methodology, including lectures, practical exercises and group works, providing a dynamic learning environment for graduate and post-graduate students (law, humanitarian or development studies, international relations) as well as disaster management and humanitarian practitioners from governments, international and regional organizations, NGOs and National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

Click here to download the flyer of the 2016 IDL Course, and stay tuned for the 2017 edition!

Casolari Speaks at the Conference "La governance degli Stati in crisi tra diritto e relazioni internazionali"

Verona, 27-28 May 2016

The Law Department of the University of Verona held a two-day conference on the governance of States in time of crisis, focussing on two extremely topical themes: the Syrian crisis and the climate crisis. Within the latter section, Federico Casolari - coordinator of the IDLP Bologna unit - presented on "International Disaster Law e strumenti internazionali di contrasto al cambiamento climatico: un dialogo possibile?" (International Disaster Law and International Instruments to Fight Against Climate Change: A Possible Dialogue?). The agenda of the Conference can be downloaded here.

Zorzi Giustiniani Speaks at the Conference "Disasters and Displacement in a Warming World: Current Realities, Legal Perspectives"

Lund, 3-4 May 2016

The Law Department of the University of Lund organized, within the framework of the Lund/Uppsala Migration Law Network L/UMIN, an international symposium entitled "Disasters and Displacement in a Warming World". The purpose of the symposium was to provide a forum for internationally renowned scholars and practitioners with expertise in displacement, disaster response, risk reduction and climate change to share their knowledge with specialists in international refugee law and climate change-related harm. Flavia Zorzi Giustiniani - IDLP coordinator - presented on "The Role of Temporary Protection Regimes", within a panel devoted to the discussion of the application of refugee law in times of disaster.

Zorzi Giustiniani Invited to Lecture in Geneva on "Legal Environment for Humanitarian Action 2015-2016"

Geneva, 12 April 2016

Within the 2016 edition of the CEDAH (Geneva Centre for Education and Research in Humanitarian Action) Certificate of Advanced Studies - Legal Environment of Humanitarian Action, Flavia Zorzi Giustiniani - IDLP coordinator - gave a lecture on the "Disaster Response Law". The 7-week course is aimed at fostering humanitarian and legal professionals' knowledge of the law applicable to humanitarian action, and to equip its participants with the ability to analyse the challenges of humanitarian action from a legal perspective.

Uninettuno and Sant'Anna International Conference "Protection of Persons in Times of Disasters: European and International Perspectives"

3-4 March 2016

The Uninettuno and Sant'Anna units of the IDLP jointly organized an international conference entitled the "Protection of Persons in Times of Disasters: European and International Perspective", which took place in Rome, at the premises of the Information Office of the European Parliament in Italy. The 2-days conference, organized under the patronage of the Italian Branch of the International Law Association, aimed at providing a comprehensive assessment of the main legal issues concerning the application of international human rights law in disaster situations and a reflection on its role in shaping the obligations of States and of other actors involved. The opening panel was devoted to disaster-induced displacement, hosting a key-note speech by Prof. Walter Kälin (former UN Special Representative for the Protection of IDPs). The morning session of the second day provided the opportunity to discuss the draft papers which will be collected in an edited volume on "Human Rights and Disasters" (Routledge 2017). The report of the Conference will soon be published on the IDLP website

Please access the Conference poster here and flyer here.

The IDLP Assisted the ILC Special Rapporteur on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters in Drafting His Eight Report

16 March 2016

Following up on their previous activity in support of the ILC Special Rapporteur Eduardo Valencia Ospina, the IDLP coordinators assisted him in the drafting of his Eight Report, on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters, which was released in March 2016. For further analysis of the Report, see below the section "Developments in International Disaster Law".


3. Developments in Int'l Disaster Law

Developments in International Law

The International Law Commission Adopts on Second Reading the Draft Articles on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters

At its sixty-eighth session the International Law Commission (ILC) is going to finalize the adoption on second reading of its Draft Articles on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters and related Commentary, which were developed by the International Law Commission (ILC) from 2008 to 2014 and adopted on first reading in 2014. Upon their adoption on first reading, the ILC decided, in accordance with articles 16 to 21 of its Statute, to transmit them, through the Secretary-General, to governments, competent international organizations, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) for comments and observations.

On occasion of the 68th session of the ILC, the appointed Special Rapporteur, Dr. Eduardo Valencia-Ospina, taking into account comments received  (as summarised in A/CN.4/696 + Add.1), presented the Eight Report on this issue (A/CN.4/697), representing the culmination of seven years of efforts in progressively develop and codify the topic at hand. In his report the Special Rapporteur deemed it appropriate to include his proposal for the final form of the draft articles and the text of the corresponding preamble which aims at providing a conceptual framework for the draft articles, setting out the general context in which the topic has been elaborated, and providing the essential rationale for the draft articles. In the last part of the report, the Special Rapporteur then recommended the Commission to take a position in favour of the adoption of a binding instrument, such as an international convention, to be concluded on the basis of the final Draft Articles, so that it can become truly effective in the face of the increasing frequency and intensity of these events.

On the basis of the Eight Report of the Special Rapporteur and comments and observations submitted by States, international organizations and the IFRC and the ICRC, the ILC started the second reading of the draft articles, which were considered at its 3291st to 3296th meetings, held from 2 to 11 May 2016. The ILC decided to refer the draft preamble and draft articles, as recommended by the Special Rapporteur, to the Drafting Committee that subsequently presented to the ILC the statement of its Chairman, including the titles and texts of the preamble and draft articles 1 to 18 as adopted on second reading by the Drafting Committee (A/CN.4/L.871), subsequently endorsed by the plenary of the ILC. In this regard the ILC has introduced a series of changes to the draft articles as adopted on first reading in order to improve their content, rationalise their structure, and better reflect suggestions made by States, international organizations, he IFRC and the ICRC, while maintaining some of the basic premises of the project.

In particular a specific attention has been put on refining the use of terms (DA 3), introducing some changes to the definition of disaster to better capture the effects of calamitous events, as the reference to mass displacement, and key notions as assisting actors. Similarly additional changes have involved DA 5, dealing with human rights (DA 5), aiming to better define this reference. Attention has also been paid to provisions aiming to regulate the relationships between the affected state and assisting actors, as in relation to the duty to cooperate (DA 7), the duty to seek assistance (DA 11), offers of external assistance (DA 12), termination of external assistance (DA 17), among the others. A specific attention has also been paid to the final provision in order to better capture the relationship of the draft articles with other rules of international law, such as international humanitarian law (DA 18). Similarly the reaffirmation of key provisions, as those dealing with the duty of state to reduce the risk of disaster (DA 9) or consent of the affected state to external assistance (DA 13) could be welcomed as a restatement by the ILC of significant legal principles in this area. In its final meetings (July-August 2016), the ILC will also adopt the Commentary to the draft articles, to be reproduced in the report of the ILC to the UN General Assembly, in order to complement the draft articles with a fundamental instrument for their interpretation. Similarly the ILC is also going to provide some recommendations to the UN General Assembly on the final form of the draft articles.

UNISDR Launches "Sendai Seven" Campaign to Save Lives in Disasters

11 July 2016

On July 11, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Mr. Robert Glasser, launched “The Sendai Seven Campaign – 7 Targets, 7 Years”, an advocacy initiative to encourage implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction with the goal of saving lives, reducing disaster losses and improving management of disaster risk.

It has been decided that this year’s target is reducing mortality and “Live to Tell” is the slogan for International Day for Disaster Reduction which will be on the 13th October. Indeed, as acknowledged by Mr. Glasser, many successes there are still far too many lives being lost in predictable events because of failures to deploy early warning systems, learn lessons from past events and to grasp the growing threat of climate change and its impact on extreme weather events including storms, floods and drought. In addition, figures show that gender is a critical issue in reducing mortality. Worldwide, women and children are up to 14 times more likely than men to die in a disaster and roughly 60% of preventable maternal deaths and 53% of preventable under-5 deaths take place in conflict and disaster settings. Other groups affected disproportionately include persons living with disabilities, older persons and indigenous people. As a result, one of the seven targets and vital theme on which the campaign is centred around is risk awareness among the general public in order to substantially reduce loss of life, numbers of people affected, economic losses and damage to infrastructure. Moreover, according to the Sendai Framework, the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) decided to focus on increasing national and local disaster risk reduction strategies by 2020, enhanced international cooperation to developing countries and increased availability of multi-hazard early warning systems.

The success of the Sendai Seven Campaign depends on engaging and connecting with a wide range of stakeholders to promote awareness of the Sendai Framework and actions required to implement it, and to achieve its targets. Therefore, UNISDR is inviting submissions which demonstrate best practice in reducing mortality from natural and man-made hazards. 

Instabul Hosted the World Humanitarian Summit

23-24 May 2016

Since humanitarian needs have increased in scope and diversity, generating a large financing gap, in January 2012 the UN Secretary-General proposed the convening of a summit to ensure countries, organisations and relief workers come together to address global humanitarian crises. 

The first World Humanitarian Summit, held on 23 and 24 May 2016 in Istanbul, convened 9,000 participants from 173 Member States, including 55 Heads of State and Government, hundreds of private sector representatives, and thousands of people from civil society and non-governmental organizations to take action to prevent and reduce human suffering. Among the most relevant non-governmental organisations, Médecins Sans Frontières decided to pull out of the Summit because, although its engagement in the WHS process, it did not believe the conference could have any chance of addressing the weaknesses in humanitarian action and emergency response, particularly in conflict areas or epidemic situations. Despite such important absence, the thousands of participants made commitments and launched initiatives to fulfill the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change for the most vulnerable people. The Summit was organised into different roundtables such as: Preventing and Ending Conflict; Upholding the Norms that Safeguard Humanity; Leaving No-one Behind; Natural Disasters and Climate Change; From Delivering Aid to Ending Need; Gender Equality; and Investing in Humanity. In the outcomes of each panel, the participants made it emphatically clear that humanitarian assistance alone can neither adequately address nor sustainably reduce the needs of over 130 million of the world’s most vulnerable people, so that a number of concrete action proposals have been made.

One of the Summit’s main achievements was the “Grand Bargain”, a set of commitments to reform humanitarian financing to make emergency aid finance more efficient and effective. The launch of the Grand Bargain by the UN Secretary-General is the first opportunity for more aid providers to show their support and agree to changes in working practices which include gearing up cash programming, greater funding for national and local responders and cutting bureaucracy through harmonised reporting requirements. Another major achievement was in the area of disaster preparedness with the launch of a new “Global Partnership for Preparedness” to help countries get ready for future disasters. The initiative is a collaboration between the V20 (a group of Group of Ministers of Finance of the Climate Vulnerable Forum which represents 43 high risk developing nations), and a number of UN agencies. These included the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Food Programme (WFP) as well as the World Bank’s Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR). The Partnership aims at helping the twenty most at-risk countries attain a basic level of readiness by 2020 for future disaster risks, mainly caused by climate change. Finally, the Summit marked a major step forward for people with disabilities and for impartial humanitarian aid with the adoption of the Charter on Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action. These are just some examples of the results achieved in the Summit which enabled the international community to come together to find more effective ways of working towards the common objective of saving lives and alleviating suffering, and to set the working agenda for beyond 2016.


UNISDR Science and Technology Conference on the Implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030

27-29 January 2016, Geneva

The outcome of the conference was to launch the UNISDR Science and Technology Partnership for the implementation of the Sendai Framework and to discuss and endorse the UNISDR Science and Technology Road Map. The Science and Technology Road Map will define the expected outcomes of the science and technology work under each of the four Sendai Framework priority areas of actions and the ways to monitor progress and needs.

The conference brought together the full diversity of science and technology community, policy makers, practitioners and researchers from all geographical regions, at local, national, regional and international levels to discuss how the science and technology community will support the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.

To meet the Sendai Framework, the scientific and technical communities committed at the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction held in Sendai on March 2015 to establish a partnership of science and technology, by mobilizing relevant institutions, networks and initiatives to share and develop the assessment, synthesis, science advice, monitoring and review, capacity development, and communication and engagement initiatives identified in the Science and Technology Road Map.


Developments in EU Law and Practice

Bruxelles Hosted the EU Resilience Forum 2016 on the Occasion of the European Development Days

16 June 2016

The European Development Days (EDD) bring the development community together each year to share ideas and experiences in ways that inspire new partnerships and innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. For its tenth anniversary, EDD 2016 focused on the “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, making it one of the very first major conferences dedicated to the issue. On this occasion, it was organised the EU Resilience Forum 2016 which on 16 June brought together representatives from donor organisations, civil society groups, think-tanks and partner countries, to discuss how to reduce vulnerabilities in risk-prone environments and to help local populations withstand and recover from disasters. Specifically, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, Christos Stylianides, and the EU Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, hosted a round of the Resilience Dialogues entitled “Local Action to Address Fragility and Protracted Displacement”, a series of events to monitor and report on progress on the resilience agenda born out of the partnership between the World Bank, the European Union, the Government of Japan, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). This round looked into translating the outcomes of the Agenda 2030 and the recent World Humanitarian Summit into actions to strengthen local resilience, promoting a better understanding of resilience in the context of forced displacement, and exploring a broader knowledge of lessons learnt from implementing resilience support, in particular at the local level. This event provided World Bank Vice President, Laura Tuck, with the opportunity to highlight the institution’s work in fragile and conflict affected States, and the connection to the growing climate and disaster resilience portfolio, including in recovery situations. Moreover, the Forum included two “Projects Labs” showcasing local actions for resilience-building, as well as success stories, in the Sahel region and in Lake Chad.

The EU-China Disaster Risk Management Project Further Develops for Preparing for Disasters

13 May 2016

The EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Cooperation adopted at the 16th EU-China Summit in November 2013 provides that both sides will promote policy exchange and facilitate cooperation and exchange of expertise in disaster prevention, preparedness and response to natural and technological disasters. As part of the EU-China Disaster Risk Management Project, a five-year project supporting China’s work in disaster risk reduction and emergency preparedness, from 11 to 13 May 2016, Chinese and European civil protection authorities and experts joined forces to participate in “EU-SCIP 2016”. It has been the first ever joint full-scale exercise aimed at testing and reinforcing the Chinese civil protection system across all levels to respond  to a simulated scenario based on a series of chemical incidents resulting from a powerful typhoon striking China and affecting directly Shanghai Chemical Industry Park. In light of these incidents, Chinese authorities requested EU assistance via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism that let deploy EU civil protection teams working in close cooperation with the Chinese civil protection experts. As a full-scale exercise, it included both table-top exercises and onsite drills, as well as the participation of professional rescue teams, volunteer civil protection units, municipal, provincial and national governments and the population of two districts of Shanghai. Moreover, various observers attended and evaluated the exercise to draw valuable lessons for future disaster response activities. China is one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world and, therefore, by participating in joint exercises of this format, the European and Chinese civil protection teams contribute to better safeguarding the population, infrastructure and facilities.

The EU Established the EU Emergency Support to Deal with Exception Circumstances

15 March 2016

Since January 2015, more than one million people have made their journey into the EU, using what has become to be known as the “Western Balkans route”, crossing Turkey and then Greece in an effort to reach central and northern Europe. Against this background, a number of European countries have delivered in-kind assistance to Greece through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, by offering 170.000 items of material support to respond to the most immediate needs, such as tents, beds, sleeping bags, blankets, hygiene kits, power generators, water pumps, fire-fighting equipment and other specialised equipment. But, the closure of the border between the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Greece in March 2016 made the situation worse by causing more than 54.000 people to become stranded in Greece – often without adequate access to shelter, food and water. In response to this situation, it was decided to establish a financial instrument able to further support the Mechanism in providing assistance to those in need. On 15 March 2016, the Council adopted Regulation (EU) 2016/369 on the provision of emergency support within the European Union that empowers the EU to take a needs-based emergency response when an exceptional disaster occurs within its territory. EU emergency support, that according to Article 3 of the Regulation should aim at preserving life, preventing and alleviating human suffering and maintaining human dignity, is implemented through the Commission’s partner organisations, such as UN agencies, the Red Cross family and non-governmental organisations in the field of humanitarian aid as well as specialised services of Member States. Where necessary the Commission can also direct fund assistance, relief and protection operations to save and preserve life in disasters or in their immediate aftermath. According to the legislation, the decision to activate such emergency support within the European Union can be taken by the Council following a proposal made by the Commission. The first activation of the emergency support instrument took place on 16 March 2016 by proposing to distribute a total of €700 million in different tranches between 2016 and 2018 for the current influx of refugees and migrants into the European Union. As first step, on 19 April 2016, the Commission awarded a total of €83 million to the UN refugee agency (UNHCR), to a pan-European consortium of Red Cross societies and to six European nongovernmental organisations, including International Rescue Committee, the Danish Refugee Council, Médecins du Monde, OXFAM, the Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund and Save the Children. The new funding enables to deliver primary health care, by creating better hygiene conditions, and to construct temporary housing for people in need; moreover, it ensures the provision of food and other essentials such as sleeping bags, blankets and personal hygiene items. It is also allowing for the creation of child friendly spaces, as well as providing assistance for family reunification and legal support that enables refugees and migrants, for example, to better understand their rights and to access available services. To conclude, such a new instrument represents a further element of the multi-sectoral response of the European Union in case of exceptional circumstances. Despite it has been firstly used to deal with the refugee crisis, it cannot be excluded that it will be activated also in the aftermath of man-made or natural disasters by complementing the response of the affected country and the intervention of the EU Civil Protection Mechanism.

The EU Launches New European Medical Corps to Respond Faster to Health Emergencies

15 February 2016

A key difficulty during the response to the Ebola virus outbreak was to quickly deploy medical staff and deal with logistical and management challenges. In particular, the Ebola crisis revealed shortcomings in the mobilization of medical personnel, medical evacuation capacity and international coordination. This led Germany and France in late 2014 to propose a “White Helmets” initiative, which laid the foundation of the European Medical Corps (EMC) launched on the 15th February 2016 by Christos Stylianides, European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, in a high-level ceremony in Brussels. The inauguration event was opened by Monique Pariat, Director General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection of the European Commission, and keynote speakers were the German and French Foreign Ministers Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Jean-Marc Ayrault, as well as Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Vytenis Andriukaitis, European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety. The European Union established the EMC to help mobilise medical and public health teams and equipment for responding to emergencies inside and outside the EU and for ensuring a faster and more predictable response before an emergency strikes. The medical corps can include emergency medical teams, public health and medical coordination experts, mobile bio-safety laboratories, medical evacuation planes and logistical support teams. Participation in the EMC is voluntary for EU Member States, as well as for other countries, and so far only nine Member States have expressed willingness to join, including Belgium, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Luxembourg, Germany, Spain, Sweden and the Netherlands. To be part of the EMC, the teams need to undergo a certification process according to strict quality criteria and to be trained to work within the international coordination framework, thereby benefitting, in return, from EU financial support in the framework of the so-called adaptation costs. Moreover, the EMC is embedded into the global efforts for stepping up the world’s health emergency response capacity. It has indeed become the Europe’s contribution to the Global Health Emergency Workforce that has been set up under the helm of the World Health Organization to fully implement the International Health Regulations.

In February 2016 London Hosted Major European Training Course for Disaster Response

23 February - 3 March 2016, London

On behalf of the London Resilience Partnership, the city of London hosted Exercise Unified Response, the biggest multi-agency training exercise in the 150-year-long history of the London Fire Brigade. The operation, which was a large scale and complex, live and command post exercise, held between 29 February 2016 and 3 March 2016.

The operation took place near Dartford river crossing where a realistic environment was created to simulate a major search and rescue accident. The scenario involved a tower block under renovation which had collapsed onto Waterloo metro station, while national response capacities were overwhelmed by two other incidents in the country. It was therefore a complex situation incorporating heavy transport and mass casualties. As a consequence, the scenario urged the United Kingdom authorities to request assistance from other European countries via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism. Teams from Italy, Hungary and Cyprus, as well as an EU civil protection team with experts from different participating States were then quickly mobilised to assist in the rescue operations. The exercise included over 1.000 casualties, thousands of tonnes of rubble, seven underground carriages and hundreds of emergency service responders. The Emergency Response Coordination Centre also took part and the exercise was designed to validate protocols and coordination arrangements at the responder, tactical and strategic level. Exercise Unified Response has been funded by the European Commission Exercise Program to practise the Civil Protection Mechanism and coordinated by London Fire Brigade on behalf of the London Resilience Partnership. Indeed, exercises of this scale are vital to ensure that European civil protection teams gain experience in responding to large scale emergencies. They equally serve to enhance collaboration among European civil protection authorities and teams and provide valuable lessons learned.


Developments in Other Regional Organizations

Central Asia and South Caucasus Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction Facilitating effective implementation of Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030

12-14 July 2016, Tajikistan

The need for a Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction for Central Asia and South Caucasus (CASC) to facilitate focused dialogue and strategic planning similar to the other regions has been strongly voiced in regional discussions leading up to the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (WCDRR), held in Sendai, Japan, in March 2015.

The CASC Regional Platform meeting convened national authorities and relevant stakeholders to discuss specific measures for effective planning and implementation of the Sendai Framework in the region, including planning and implementation guidance, training and capacity enhancement, as well as plans of action, commitments, benchmarks and indicators of progress. The potential and modalities of how the regional platform mechanism can optimally benefit the region have also be explored.

CASC Regional Platform for DRR has been followed by a two day Training of Trainers Programme: 'Guidance on planning and implementation of the Sendai Framework for DRR'. The ToT aims to strengthening understanding of the Sendai Framework for DRR and develop capacity on how to use tools proposed by UNISDR to identify gaps and develop action plans to align policies and plans for implementation, as well as to support the advancement of capacity development initiatives for DRR and resilience building in the countries of the CASC region.

The proposed Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in CASC aimed to:

- Discuss and agree on policy guidance and support required for effective planning and implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction in the region; at the national and regional levels
- Take stock and assess the status of implementation of Sendai framework for Disaster Risk Reduction at the national and regional levels, update and identify areas for priority action
- Facilitate planning and implementation with guidance, training, capacity enhancement and support required in the region through partnerships, guidance for resource mobilization
- Discuss plans of action, commitments, benchmarks and indicators of progress at the national and regional levels
- Support the contribution and learning of the CASC region, inform and build on the global and regional platforms, policy forums and guidance processes, including Asia Ministerial Conference for DRR (AMCDRR), the Worldwide Initiative for Safe Schools (WISS), Global Platform for DRR, and the UN Plan of Action on DRR for resilience.

New protocol for mutual humanitarian assistance in Central America

April 2016

The Coordination Center for the Prevention of Natural Disasters in Central America (Centro de Coordinación para la Prevención de los Desastres en América Central - CEPREDENAC), comprised of the Directorates of the National Disaster Offices in Central America, adopted in April the Central American Protocol for the Shipment, Transit and Reception of Humanitarian Assistance. Its aim is to increase operational coordination in disaster situations, to provide more effective humanitarian and technical assistance in the Central American region, as well as standardize procedures for the modalities of assisted state, assisting state and transit state. Central America is among the most active regions in strengthening its regional mechanisms for mutual assistance. In addition to this Protocol, SICA members are expected soon to also adopt a Regulation for the Shipment of Humanitarian Goods. 

8th Session of Africa Working Group on Disaster Risk Reduction

16-17 February 2016

African countries have held fresh talks to drive forward their implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, a global agreement that is part of wider efforts to make development sustainable.

The 8th Africa Working Group, which brought together governments, the African Union Commission, the continent’s regional economic communities and other partners, met in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa in february 2016.  

Mr. Amjad Abbasar, Head of the UNISDR Regional Office for Africa, said that the meeting created a “solid foundation for implementing a series of intergovernmental agreements adopted in 2015 in Africa, championing disaster risk reduction as the medium for risk-sensitive development.”

On average, almost two disasters of significant proportions have been recorded every week in Sub-Saharan Africa since 2000. Water, weather and climate hazards, notably floods and drought, dominate the region’s disaster profile, affecting around 12.5 million people per year.

The Sendai Framework, adopted by the international community in March 2015, seeks to bring about substantial falls in disaster mortality, numbers of affected people, and economic losses.

The first in a series of four global accords put in place last year to shape the global agenda through to 2030, the Sendai Framework was followed by the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on financing for development, the Sustainable Development Goals, and the COP21 Paris Agreement on climate change.

Speaking at the Africa Working Group meeting, Dr. Janet Edeme, Acting Director of the African Union Commission’s Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture, underscored the links between implementing the Sendai Framework and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Africa Working Group is the continent’s top technical body for the coordination of disaster risk reduction. Its current task is to flesh out the Yaoundé Declaration, a Sendai Framework implementation plan that was adopted by ministers last July at a conference in the capital of Cameroon.

At the end of the two-day meeting, members of the Africa Working Group issued a Summary Statement highlighting the importance of implementation of the Sendai Framework in Africa particularly in light of the continued spate of disasters on the continent, including those induced by the El Nino climate phenomenon. They also recognised that the series of post-2015 agreements provide a unique opportunity to Africa to bring together international frameworks through the lens of disaster risk reduction for resilience.

The meeting was convened with financial support from the European Union as part of its cooperation with the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States. Its outcomes will be deliberated at various future meetings, notably the 6th Session of the Africa Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction later this year.


4. IDL Publications

New IDLP Publications

Emanuele Sommario Concludes the Routledge Collected Volume on Law and the Management of Disasters

Expected in 2017, the collected book of Alexia Herwig and Marta Simoncini (eds), Law and the Management of Disasters (Routledge) steps in the debate on the management of disasters by focusing on the contribution of law to resilence building, by looking at law's role in the different phases of the disaster regulatory process: risk assessment, risk management, emergency intervention, and recovery. More specifically, the book addresses how law can effectively contribute to resilience-oriented distaster management policies, and what legal instruments can support effective resilience-building. Emanuele Sommario - coordinator of the Sant'Anna IDLP unit - wrote the conclusions to the volume, in a contribution entitled 'One Law to Bind Them All: International Law and Disaster Resilience'.

Federico Casolari Writes on the International Reaction to Ebola and on the EU External Action Response to Disasters 

Two Federico Casolari's - coordinator of the IDLP Bologna unit - recent publications timely contribute to current scholars' debates on two interesting IDL-related topics. First, he reflected upon the international response to pandemics in a paper entitled La reazione alla diffusione del virus Ebola: verso un nuovo paradigm nella governance internazionale delle pandemie? (The Reaction to the Diffusion of Virus Ebola: A New Paradigm in the International Governance of Pandemics?), in Tronconi L.P. (ed), Unione Europea e diritto alla tutela della salute: problematiche giuridiche comparate. Quaderni di Sanità pubblica, Stantarcangelo di Romagna, 2016, pp.177-206. Furthermore, he stepped in the discussion on the plus and cons of the EU action in responding to disasters in his article La dimensione esterna dell'azione dell'Unione Europea nella risposta ai disastri naturali ed antropici: quale coerenza? (Any Coherence in the External Dimension of the EU Action in Responding to Natural and Man-Made Disasters?), in Gestri M. (ed), Disastri, Protezione civile e diritto: nuove prospettive dell'Unione Europea e in ambito penale, Giuffré Editore, 2016, pp. 63-122.


IDL Publications


• Carlarne P. C., Gray K. R. and Tarasofsky R. (eds), The Oxford Handbook of International Climate Change Law (OUP 2016)

• Daly P., Feener R. M. (eds), Rebuilding Asia Following Natural Disasters. Approaches to Reconstruction in the Asia-Pacific Region (Cambridge 2016)

• Farber D., Peeters M. (eds.), Climate Change Law (Edgar Elgar Publishing, 2016)

• Gestri M. (ed), Disastri, Protezione Civile e Diritto: Nuove Prospettive nell'Unione Europea e in Ambito Penale (Giuffrè, 2016)

• Lyster R., Climate Justice and Disaster Law (CUP, 2016)

• Peel J., Fisher D., The Role of International Environmental Law in Disaster Risk Reduction (Brill Nijhoff, 2016)

• Uitto J. I., Shaw R. (eds), Sustainable Development and Disaster Risk Reduction (Springer Japan, 2016)

Articles in Law Journals and Collected Volumes

• Cimiotta E., Le implicazioni del primo ricorso alla c.d. ‘clausola di mutua assistenza’ del Trattato sull’Unione europea, in 1 European Papers 1 (2016), pp. 163-175

• Faure M. G., In The Aftermath Of The Disaster: Liability And Compensation Mechanisms As Tools To Reduce Disaster Risks, in 52 Stan. J Int'l L. 95 (2016), pp. 95 - 178

• Feldman E. A., Compensating the Victims of Japan's 3-11 Fukushima Disaster 2015, in 16 Asian-Pacific Law & Policy Journal (2015), pp. 127-157

• Finger D., Post-Disaster Housing Through the Lens of Litigation: The Katrina Housing Justice Docket, in 61 Loyola Law Review 591 (2015), pp. 590-621

• Lewis B., Maguire R., A Human Rights-based Approach to Disaster Displacement in the Asia-Pacific, in 6 Asian Journal of International Law 2 (2016), pp. 326-352

• Luckman M. H., Strafer D., Lipski C., Three Years Later, Sandy Survivors Remain Homeless, in 32 Touro L. Rev. 313 (2016), pp. 313-349

• Raikes J., McBean G., Responsibility and liability in emergency management to natural disasters: A Canadian example, in 16 International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction (2016), pp. 12–18

• Schmid E., Adverse Human Agency and Disasters: A Role for International Criminal Law? (August 7, 2015), forthcoming in Breau S. and Samuel K. (eds), The Elgar Research Handbook on Disasters and International Law (Edgar Elgar, 2016)

• Telesetsky A., Overlapping International Disaster Law Approaches with International Environmental Law Regimes to Address Latent Ecological Disaster, in 52 Stan. J Int'l L. 179 (2016)

• Toyoda T., The Framework of International Cooperation for Disaster Management and Japan’s Contribution, in Kaneko Y., Matsuoka K., Toyoda T. (eds), Asian Law in Disasters. Toward a Human-Centered Recovery (2016)

• van Aaken A., Is International Law Conducive To Preventing Looming Disasters?, in 7 Global Policy (2016), pp. 81–96

• Van Engeland A., Contextualisation of Humanitarian Assistance and its Shortcomings in International Human Rights Law, in 49 Israel Law Review, 49 (2016), pp 169-195

• Verchick R. M., Disaster Law and Climate Change, in Farber D., Peeters M. (eds), Climate Change Law, Edgar Elgar Publishing, 2016, pp 673-686

Reports & Working Papers

• Connolly R., Flaux E. & Wu A., Working Paper on the ILC Draft Articles on the Protection of Persons in the Event of Disasters (Human Rights Centre, Queen’s University Belfast), February 2016

• IFRC and UNDP, The Handbook on Law and Disaster Risk Reduction (2015)

• IFRC, Disaster Law in Southeast Asia - Summary of progress 2012-2015 (2015)

• Van Elsuwege P., Orbie J. and Bossuyt F., Humanitarian aid policy in the EU’s external relations – The post-Lisbon framework, Swedish Institute for European Policy Studies, SIEPS 2016:3


• Alì A., L’attivazione della clausola UE di mutual assistenza a seguito degli attacchi terroristici del 13 novembre 2015 in Francia, SIDIBlog, 21 dicembre 2015

• Spagnolo A., Contromisure dell’OMS come conseguenza di violazioni dei Regolamenti sanitari internazionali in contesti epidemici, SIDIBlog, 5 maggio 2016

• Vezzani S., Emergenze sanitarie globali e diritto internazionale: l’accesso agli agenti patogeni e alle relative sequenze genetiche, SIDIBlog, 27 maggio 2016


5. News

Fifth Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction

22-26 May 2017, Cancun

The Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction is a biennial forum for information exchange, discussion of latest developments, knowledge and partnership-building across sectors, with the goal of improving implementation of disaster risk reduction through better communication and coordination amongst stakeholders. Its core function is to enable governments, NGOs, scientists, practitioners, and UN organizations to share experience and formulate strategic guidance for the implementation of global disaster risk reduction agreements. The Fifth Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction will be held in Cancun, Mexico on 22-26 May, 2017, by marking the first opportunity for the international community to review global progress on the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. More than 5,000 participants are expected, including policy makers and disaster risk managers to discuss about preventing and reducing disaster losses is vital to the eradication of poverty.

Sixth Africa Regional Platform and Fifth High-Level Meeting on Disaster Risk Reduction Meets in Mauritius

22-25 November 2016, Mauritius

Regional Platforms for Disaster Risk Reduction are multi-stakeholder forums that were developed incrementally after the Kobe Conference 2005. Specifically, the Africa Regional Platform is a biennial forum that brings together African Member States, intergovernmental organizations and development partners to review progress in the implementation of the continental and global disaster risk reduction frameworks. The 6th Session of Africa Regional Platform and the 5th High-Level Meeting will be hosted by the Government of Mauritius, a Member State of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) with support from the SADC Secretariat. The main scope of such a meeting will be to accelerate the implementation of the Sendai Framework in Africa, particularly through the alignment of the Programme of Action for implementation of the Africa Regional Strategy with the Sendai Framework, as requested by the African Union. The agenda of the 6th Session of the Africa Regional Platform will encompass a number of areas including: monitoring and reviewing progress in implementation (including intergovernmental outputs on Sendai indicators and terminology), opportunities for learning and exchange of experiences, successes, challenges and opportunities in applying disaster risk management across sectors, status of national policies and plans for disaster risk reduction, status of risk knowledge, progress on disaster risk reduction advocacy, progress on preparedness, recovery and reconstruction, and risk-informed development. A special highlight of the 6th Africa Regional Platform will be the commemoration of the first-ever World Tsunami Awareness Day

Sixth International Conference on Building Resilience 2016: Building Resilience to Address the Unexpected

7-9 September 2016, Auckland

The 6th International Building Resilience Conference 2016, with the theme “Building Resilience to Address the Unexpected” has been organized jointly by the University of Auckland’s Centre for Disaster Resilience, Recovery and Reconstruction, and the Construction Management Groups at Massey University and the University of  Auckland. The Building Resilience Conference is an annual international conference exploring resilience as a useful framework of analysis for how society can cope with the threat of natural and human induced hazards. Such edition will bring together researchers, educators and industry practitioners involved in natural hazards and disaster resilience across the globe, providing participants with a strong platform for knowledge sharing, collaboration, disciplinary reflections, institutional exchange and collective growth.

Eleventh International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage 2016

1-26 September 2016, Kyoto

From September 1, Kyoto will host the 11th edition of the International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage, that will give special focus on the Protecting cultural heritage from climate change induced disaster risks. Indeed, climate change is increasing the frequency of disasters caused by hydro-meteorological events such as heavy rainfall, flash floods, cyclones, typhoons and storm surges. Moreover, climate change is resulting in higher temperatures are also resulting increased incidents of wild fires putting cultural heritage located in forested areas to greater risk than ever before. The UNESCO Chair Programme on Cultural Heritage and Risk Management is indeed engaged in mainstreaming cultural heritage protection in wider policy, planning and institutional systems for disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. In order to reduce these risks, appropriate mitigation and adaptation strategies need to developed taking into consideration heritage values. It is also important to recognize many examples of traditional knowledge evolved by communities through series of trials and errors that demonstrate that cultural heritage can be an effective source of resilience against climate change induced disaster risks and integrate these in disaster risk management strategies. The main objective of the course is thus to provide an overview of the various aspects of disaster risk management of cultural heritage by providing interdisciplinary training to undertake an integrated risk assessment of cultural heritage; build an integrated system for disaster risk management of cultural heritage; formulate risk management plans and establish an international scientific support network for risk management of cultural heritage. 

Sixth International Disaster and Risk Conference (IDRC) on "Integrative Risk and Disaster Management: Towards Resilient Cities"

28 August - 1 September 2016, Davos

The sixth International Disaster and Risk Conference IDRC in Davos is organised by the Global Risk Forum (GRF) and will build on the outcomes of the UNISDR Science and Technology Conference held in Geneva at the end of January 2016 and will further develop the Science & Technology Roadmap. Celebrating its 10 years anniversary, the conference offers a platform for an interdisciplinary dialogue and fosters a holistic understanding of risk reduction and disaster management. The aim of the conference is to present reliable scientific facts and technological solutions and to stimulate discussion on current challenges and opportunities among representatives from diverse scientific and professional disciplines to reduce global risks. In particular, the conference outcomes shall contribute to a successful implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 to reduce disaster risks from all natural, biological, technological and social hazards. It will also integrate approaches to adaptation to climate change based on the outcome of the UN COP 21 Conference in Paris. The main objective of the meeting will be to discuss about latest research findings, case studies and best practices, and results-based science and technology programmes and initiatives aimed at improving the cities’ resilience.

Twenty-Fifth Regional Training Course on Community-Based Disaster Risk Reduction in a Changing Climate

15-26 August 2016, Bangkok

The Community-Based Disaster Risk Reduction (CBDRR) course will hold in Bangkok, Thailand, from 15 to 26 August and will provide an opportunity for practitioners to learn, upgrade and share essential skills and knowledge to systematically address disaster risk reduction challenges at the community level and to facilitate the processes to reduce disaster risk of vulnerable communities. In particular, participants will acquire tools and knowledge on how to design and implement programs for reducing disaster risks and vulnerability leading to community capacity building to promote a culture of safety and self-reliance. The course provides an opportunity to gain hands-on experience through scenario-based simulation exercises with a particular focus on examples from South and Southeast Asia and to discuss the integration of disaster risk reduction plans to governmental and non-governmental development plans. CBDRR is a specialized course addressing to the competency and knowledge needs of operation level practitioners who are or will be involved in the design and implementation of CBDRR projects and programs in their organizations. As a result, it is open for participants from various sectors including local government departments, NGOs, INGOs, UN agencies, IFRC, national emergency response agencies and the private sector. 

CARE Australia Launches Disaster Response Depot in Preparation for Humanitarian Emergencies - May 2016

May 2016

In May 2016, CARE Australia has launched its online Disaster Response Depot, allowing Australians to help the organisation keep its emergency response warehouse in Brisbane stocked to meet future humanitarian crises.

CARE Australia’s Emergency Response Manager Adam Poulter said the launch comes as we’re seeing the highest levels of human suffering since the Second World War.

“Hundreds of thousands of people live in fear of natural disasters and while we can’t stop an earthquake or cyclone, we can reduce their impact,” Mr Poulter said.

“Money spent on preparations before a disaster strikes can have up to seven times the impact value compared to money spent responding to the aftermath,” he said.

CARE’s Disaster Response Depot invites Australians to build a virtual pallet in the warehouse and pay for items to help communities prepare for and respond to natural disasters. From purchasing blankets and shelter kits, to helping fund evacutation plans and megaphones, there are multiple ways to help minimise the impact of a natural disaster.

“Preparing for a natural disaster can take many forms; for example CARE worked with the Vanuatu government to set up Community Disaster Committees, which saved lives during Cyclone Pam in 2015. Local people were trained and equipped to prepare and help their neighbours respond when the cyclone was bearing down on them,” Mr Poulter said.

Currently, record numbers of people – over 60 million according to the United Nations – have been forced from their homes by natural disasters, climate change and conflict.


Editorial Committee

Tommaso Natoli, Roma Tre University
Alice Riccardi, Uninettuno University
Susanna Villani, Alma Mater Studiorum - University of Bologna


The IDL Project is financed by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research under the grant programme FIRB Futuro in Ricerca 2012.