Showing posts from August, 2017

Transformation: Initiatives Towards Resilience

Transformation is by nature multidisciplinary; by definition it combines past with future in the present by operating simultaneously on different systems and concepts. Insurance, markets, and private sector are some of the ingredients that can be leveraged by the humanitarian system to transform cities. We have more data than we have ever had, which gives us an opportunity to compare cities, communities, periods and stages of recovery to make transformation a reality. Can cutting edge innovations that integrate disaster risk reduction with climate change adaptation transform our views on risk from the standpoint of individuals, institutions and investments that shape resilience? AIDMI's two decades of work in South Asia has shown that "Uncertainty" is an opportunity for transformation. Dr. Lyla Mehta of IDS, drawing from her ongoing field work on Climate Change, Uncertainty and Transformation in the desert of Kutch and delta areas of Sunderbans, has often mentioned that tr…

Floods Again: What Can Be Done Differently in South Asia?

Floods are age old but must South Asia's response to floods be age old as well? South Asia is now emerging to be a leader in reducing disaster risk. Such regional efforts were well received by Asian countries in the recent Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (AMCDRR) held in Delhi in November 2016. The ongoing floods in Assam in the North East of India and Gujarat in the West of India offer an opportunity to re-look the flood response in South Asia. Therefore, this issue of enlists what can be done differently. Cyclones are one such area. Floods and cyclones go hand-in-hand and the recent cyclone Mora in Myanmar offered an opportunity to look at floods recovery in an urban setting. New ways must be found to deal with floods in cities and towns that propel South Asia's economic growth. What is needed is "new dimensions" that David Sanderson and others offer in the recent book titled, "Urban Disaster Resilience". The se…

Understanding Crowds

India is no stranger to large gatherings or crowds. Crowded railway stations, market squares and temple complexes are all commonplace. Given the ubiquity of crowded places, Indians tend to have a high tolerance for them. Thus, it is important to understand how crowds operate. As soon as the word "crowd" is heard, the first instinct is to "manage" them, if not control them. Given the unusual number of stampedes taking place at religious congregations in the country it is important to manage these crowds both efficiently and creatively. Through the work of All India Disaster Mitigation Institute (AIDMI) in India across nine states, sixty nine districts and over thirty five cities it has been found that all crowds do not need to be managed or controlled; that all crowds are not unruly or out of control; that in fact crowds offer energy and numbers to move towards something creative and constructive in society from time-to-time. In AIDMI's resilience building work in…