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Title: Multi-hazard assessments for disaster risk reduction : lessons from the Philippines and applications for non-govermental organisations
Author: Duncan, M. J.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5351 6633
Awarding Body: University College London (University of London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2014
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Disaster risk reduction (DRR) should be underpinned by multi-hazard assessments that integrate community and scientific knowledge. Humanitarian and development non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are key implementers of DRR, but there is little guidance for them regarding the requirements of a multi-hazard approach. Using mainly qualitative methods, a conceptual framework for multi-hazards is proposed, which emphasises the interrelations between hazards as well as the need to address more than one hazard. This framework is compared to existing NGO hazard assessment methods at Head Office and in the Philippines (a multi-hazard hotspot), along with a case study of the 2006 Typhoon Reming lahars disaster at Mayon Volcano. Throughout the research, the role of scientific knowledge is explored. Interviewees assume that their community-based assessments ‘toolkits’ capture multi-hazards, but these are constrained by preconceptions related to DRR, the confined temporal and spatial scales of analysis and the emphasis on community knowledge. Particularly amongst Head Office NGOs, the need for science and a more anticipatory approach is driven by climate change adaptation rather than DRR. However, the Reming lahars disaster emphasises that DRR strategies must anticipate, prepare for and respond to simultaneous hazards, whilst accounting for how previous hazards might amplify or alleviate the anticipated event. The disaster emphasises the limits of community knowledge but also those of the available science, along with the need for good communication between scientists, NGOs and communities. The conceptual multi-hazard framework provides NGOs with a multi-hazard ‘lens’ to their analyses, but the findings emphasise that multi-hazard assessments require more than a toolkit. NGOs need the skills to access, understand and evaluate science and engage with scientists. There are numerous ideological and practical barriers to integrating science, which are partly addressed by a set of practical guidelines developed alongside the research. Beyond NGOs, the research has important implications for DRR policy.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available