On 16 March 2015, UNU-IAS will organize a panel debate on Risk Reduction and the Transition from Response to Recovery: Lessons from Japan’s Triple Disasters in Sendai, Japan as a side event to the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction.
The debate will focus on the challenges of the post-disaster transition from immediate response to sustainable recovery, and how they can be addressed. It will draw on analyses from Fukushima and other regions affected by the March 2011 disasters to explore gaps between actual needs and existing local and national policies in areas such as housing, employment, welfare, health care and community revitalisation. The event will provide an interdisciplinary perspective on ways to address such gaps during the post-disaster transition phase and consider their policy implications for the international disaster risk reduction agenda.
Simultaneous Japanese–English translation will be provided at this event.
9:10–9:15 Opening remarks
9:15–10:45 Panel presentations
10:45–11:40 Discussion with the audience
The Hyogo Framework for Action underlines the importance of reducing underlying risks not only in the context of disaster preparedness but also during the process of recovery. It calls for using “opportunities during the recovery phase to develop capacities that reduce disaster risk in the long term” (Hyogo Framework for Action, 4(ii)(h)).
The transition from immediate response to the longer-term recovery, however, is not a linear process. The challenges of the transition phase have become apparent in the process of Japan’s recovery from the compound disaster of the Great East Japan Earthquake, tsunami and the nuclear accident of March 11, 2011. Four years on, there are clear mismatches between the policies in effect, developed as part of the post-disaster response, and the actual situation of the affected communities, which has evolved and now calls for long term solutions. This is particularly evident in the case of the communities displaced by the “triple disasters” in Fukushima.
* * * *
UNU-IAS is co-organizing this event as part of the Fukushima Global Communication Programme, a research initiative examining impacts of the Great East Japan Earthquake, tsunami and nuclear accident of March 11, 2011 on people and society, the challenges of the recovery process in Fukushima, and related issues of risk and information provision.