Hazard Risk Resilience Magazine Volume 1 Issue 2 - Page 2

INTRO | HIGHLIGHTS | FEATURES | PHOTO STORIES | FOCUS | INTERVIEWS | PERSPECTIVES | BIOS It is a real pleasure to introduce the latest issue of IHRR’s magazine Hazard Risk Resilience and to be doing so for the first time in my capacity as Executive Director of the Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience (IHRR). Last summer I took on this role in IHRR from Professor David Petley as he moved to become Dean of Research at Durham University. We are all very grateful to David for his excellent leadership of IHRR and I am very pleased that he is able to continue contributing to our work as a member of our management board as the Wilson Chair in Hazard and Risk. Since last summer, the work of IHRR has continued apace and we have continued to expand our activities to include new partners within and beyond Durham University. The articles in this issue reflect the breadth and depth of work that we support. A significant body of research focuses on generating and communicating new knowledge about hazards in our environment and the factors that put vulnerable populations at risk of these hazards. Viewed from the perspective of resilience, our work is also very much about how to mitigate hazards or adapt to them in ways that help us reduce the risks that they pose to human societies. Resilience depends upon better preparedness for the possibility of hazards, stronger capacity to intervene during major incidents in order to help reduce their impact, and resources and skills to support reconstruction afterwards. IHRR is very consistent with this message and helps to inform work in all of these fields. Readers will find in the following pages discussion of research relating to hazards in both the physical world and in our social environment. Often these concern relatively sudden changes that can be extremely disruptive to natural or socioeconomic systems we all depend on. Examples operating at the global scale that are considered in this edition of the magazine range from efforts to better predict and respond to changes in the climate and risks faced around the world due to geohazards, to crises in the economy and strategies to prevent bank failures. At the more local and individual scale, we report on research from China, Java, Thailand and Ethiopia that illustrates the courage and determination that offers communities and individuals the possibility of ‘post-traumatic growth’ and reconstruction after disasters, and illustrates how religious, social as well as other forms of strength play a vital role. We also discuss strategies for risk governance in quite specific settings, such as local emergency planning and risk management in psychiatric hospitals. I do hope you will enjoy reading this magazine and I am always very pleased to hear from any readers who would like to send us feedback about the magazine or who would like to submit material for future articles on their work in association with IHRR relating to hazard, risk and resilience. EDITORS Sarah Curtis and Brett Cherry COPY EDITOR Krysia Johnson Contributing Editors Lena Dominelli, Claire Horwell and Nick Rosser Contributors Folarin Akinbami, Andrew Baldwin, Pojanath Bhatanacharoen, Brett Cherry and David Damby Research Highlights Brett Cherry, Sarah Curtis, Ruth Machen, Ranald Michie, Paul Ormerod, Greg Rubin and Victoria Wood IHRR Management Board Prof Sarah Curtis, Executive Director of IHRR Dr Alex Densmore, Co-Director Prof Lena Dominelli, Co-Director Dr Claire Horwell, Co-Director Prof Dave Petley, Wilson Chair in Hazard and Risk COVERS: The city of Kathmandu has a population of c.2.5 million people and is located within one of the most seismically active zones in the world. This makes it extremely vulnerable to the impact of a large magnitude earthquake. In 1934, Kathmandu was struck by the 8.1 Mw Bihar earthquake that destroyed much of the city and led to a death toll in the tens of thousands. Much work is currently needed to help prepare the city for future earthquakes, including public awareness campaigns and new earthquake resilient construction practices. © Rebecca Masters and Thea Gordon-Rawlings. Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience Durham University DH1 3LE +44 (0)191 334-2257 ihrr.admin@durham.ac.uk www.durham.ac.uk/ihrr © Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience, Durham University 2013. All articles may not be reproduced without written permission. Dr Nick Rosser, Board Member Prof Robert Holdsworth, Board Member Dr Graham Coates, Board Member Design wearewarm.com Printer Alphagraphics