GDPC Annual Event 2015


360oof Preparedness: Reflections from Cities around the World

Experts in the field of disaster management shared perspectives and experiences pertaining to disaster preparedness in rapidly growing urban settings across the globe. City case studies included Christchurch, New Zealand; Istanbul, Turkey; Kathmandu, Nepal; Mandalay, Myanmar; Mexico City, Mexico; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Boulder, USA; and Tehran, Iran. The presentations were followed by an afternoon dialogue among academics and practitioners who shared the latest research findings relevant to urban resilience.

Wacth the video of this event: 

360° of Preparedness: Reflections from Cities around the World



Time (EST)



 Registration and coffee


Welcome and opening remarks: Rebecca Scheurer, Director, GDPC & Dr. Peter Walker, Dean, Falk School of Sustainability, Chatham University



PANEL I: In the Aftermath of Disaster

Experts present case studies on response/recovery operations as well as long-term measures taken to ensure greater future city resilience.  Good practices that can be scaled will be central to the discussion.
Moderator: Exec. Dir. Nan Buzard, International Council of Voluntary Agencies

Case Studies

  • Christchurch, New Zealand: Ms. Elizabeth McNaughton, Strategy & Government Relations, New Zealand Red Cross
  • Istanbul, Turkey: Prof. Dr. Mikdat Kadıoğlu, DM Centre & Meteorological Engineering Dept., Istanbul Technical Univ.
  • Port-au-Prince, Haiti: Dr. Yolène V. Suréna, Coordinator, Reconstruction and DRM, Haitian Ministry of Interior
  • Boulder, USA: Mr. Chris Allan, Senior Research Associate, Institute for Social and Environmental Transition


PANEL II: Gearing up for Next Major Catastrophe

Experts share effective practices and creative approaches toward fostering urban community resilience based on experience or promising potential.

Moderator: Mr. Daniel Ureña, Urban Risk and Community Resilience of the Americas, IFRC Zone Office

Case Studies

  • Kathmandu, Nepal: Exec. Dir. Dr. Amod Dixit, National Society for Earthquake Technology/Nepal
  • Mandalay, Myanmar: Mr. Loy Rego, Tech. Advisor, DRR and SDGs, MARS Practitioners Network
  • Mexico City, Mexico: Ms. Ana Lucía Hill, Yo Soy Protección Civil, The Initiative
  • Tehran, Iran: Mr. Mostafa Mohaghegh, Partnership for Urban Disaster Risk Reduction and Management, IFRC


Light lunch

 Presentation: “The Road to Sendai

  • Ms. Indira Kulenovic, Resilience Coordinator, DM Unit, IFRC Asia-Pacific Zone Office

 Commentary by:

  • Mr. Howard Roy Williams, Chair, GDPC Technical Advisory Group/Pres. & CEO, Center for Humanitarian Cooperation


Creating Linkages: How Research Contributes to Building Urban Resilience

Researchers offer a snapshot of recent research findings as they pertain to building stronger cities.  Research will cover a wide range of sectors, partnerships and other facets imperative to building resilience.

Moderator: Mr. Bruno Haghebaert, Global Network of Civil Society Organisations for Disaster Risk Reduction


  • Dr. Vera Agostini, Senior Scientist, The Nature Conservancy
  • Prof. Dr. Joost Herman, President, Network on Humanitarian Action (NOHA)
  • Dr. Randolph Kent, Director, Humanitarian Futures Programme, King’s College, London
  • Exec. Dir. Ky Luu, J.D., Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy, Tulane University
  • Ms. Marla Petal, PhD, Senior Advisor for Education and Risk Reduction for Save the Children Australia


 Closing: Dr. Elizabeth Ferris, Senior Fellow & Co-director, Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement 


The National Building Museum will be hosting a panel titled, International Urban Disaster Resilience featuring speakers from today’s event. For those interested, please register and purchase tickets at under ‘Upcoming Events.’


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