EMI works with local authorities to build the resiliency of cities and municipalities to disasters. It has a tested methodology for integrating DRR and Climate Change impacts in local governance, with a particular focus on empowering the disaster management units of each city and municipal government to understand their risks, build their capacity to address those risk with appropriate tools, and generate support and mobilize action from other stakeholders on risk reduction. EMI supports the efforts of local governments in mainstreaming DRR in their core functions by engaging city officials, its citizens including civil society and peoples organizations, academe, private sector, and other key stakeholders in a participatory process that builds ownership, sustainability, and efficient inter-institutional coordination.
EMI organizes its activities along three core areas:1. Methodology and Practice for building capacity on DRR and mainstreaming DRR in local governance functions, such as:
- Emergency/Disaster Response and Management
- Land Use Planning and Urban (re)-Development
- Construction Codes and Standards
- Legal, Institutional, and Organizational Arrangements
- Hazards, Vulnerability and Risk Analysis/Assessment
- Local-Level Disaster Risk ManagementShelter, Livelihood and Disaster Resiliency of Essential Services (e.g., shelter, housing, water, transportation, sanitation, health, etc.)
- Geographic Information System and Information technology in Risk Communication
- Training, Competency and Capacity Building
- Strategic Planning, Education, Advocacy and Social Mobilization
- Performance and Resiliency Indicators
- Project Management
2. Tools and Training Programs to support and sustain local Disaster Risk Management (DRM) practice, such as:
- MEGA-Safe, is a specialized online course on Local-level Emergency Management Organizations and Operations. The course walks through the steps of how to build and conduct basic Emergency Management functions at the local level. Among these functions are the development of basic plans, coordinating among organizations, conducting preparedness activities, testing plans and developing and conducting exercises. MEGA-Safe aims to train local authorities on how to set up local-level organizational structures and operations for disaster/emergency management.
- MEGA-Plan, is a specialized online course that aims to demonstrate how land use planning can be a means to modify vulnerabilities and reduce disaster risks of cities and urban areas exposed to natural hazards
- MEGA-View: Internet-Based Map Viewers- This easy-to-use browser-based interactive tool allows users to retrieve useful information and maps from datasets such as hazards, transportation, public facilities, emergency services, elevation, and land use/zoning.
- Natural Disaster Risk Management Program (NDRMP)- The World Bank Institute (WBI) has partnered with EMI in the delivery of its Global Distance Learning Program on Natural Disaster Risk Management (NDRMP), which is a series of online courses designed to develop a broader understanding of natural disaster risk management among local government decision makers, policy makers, city managers, administrators, and planners, disaster management practitioners and responders as well as enhance the effectiveness of disaster risk management practices at the local and community levels. Courses offerred are the following: Comprehensive Disaster Management Framework, Community Based Disaster Risk Management, Climate Change and Disaster Risk, Reducing Disaster Risk Through LUP, Safe Cities, Damage and Reconstruction Needs Assessment, Earthquake Risk Reduction.
- Cityriskpedia- is an online, wiki-based encyclopedia for documenting and sharing sound practices in DRM from the world’s most disaster-prone urban environments. It also contains city profiles, urban DRM documents and a directory of DRM professionals working in different cities worldwide. It is built on open source technology, with robust searching and browsing functionalities made possible through a semantic wiki.
- Disaster Risk Resiliency Indicators- is a stakeholders’ analytical self assessment tool to communicate risk and promote discussion around appropriate strategies and concrete actions that stakeholders’ can take to reduce and manage disaster risk. It helps enhance stakeholders’ ownership and assists in policy development, decision-making, and monitoring the effectiveness of specific risk reduction options.
- Urban Disaster Risk Reduction Indicators – is a set of advanced indicators systems that combine physical risks, social risks, and social and economic coping capacity to provide objective benchmarks for benchmarking and monitoring. The tools are used to also establish resource allocations and prioritization.
DRM Practices Globally
- Capacity Needs Assessment on Disaster Preparedness and Response. The aim of this undertaking is to assess the existing capacities of national agencies and local governments in DRR using the Disaster Risk Resiliency Indicators as parameters in the analysis. Results of the assessment will be used to inform WFP and its partners on key priorities for investments and technical assistance in disaster preparedness and response. Partners: WFP, DILG, DSWD, OCD, four provinces and eight cities.
- Set-up of a Disaster Risk Management Office and Undertake Related Competency Training, Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority, Jordan. The objective of the project is to support ASEZA (Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority) in the design and set up a Disaster Risk Management Office (DRM Office) that would oversee the DRM activities in the city on behalf of ASEZA. The project includes consultations with the relevant officials and stakeholders to define the administrative structure and functional obligation and authorities of the DRM Office, to provide the necessary competency training for the ASEZA selected staff, and to provide a plan to strengthen the office with time. This project is undertaken in collaboraton with UNDP-Jordan and in partnership with ASEZA. About 20 stakeholders were involved in the project. Partners: UNDP-Jordan, Swiss Development Agency, ASEZA, Government of Jordan.
- Disaster Risk Reduction in Greater Mumbai Project, Mumbai, India. The aim of this project is to put in place the processes and mechanisms and build the competency of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) on Emergency and Crisis Management. Another aim is to build the resiliency of the city by developing the Disaster Risk Management Master Plan that provides the framework for strategies, actions, and priorities by the city in reducing its risks to disasters. A total of 118 stakeholders were involved in this project. Partners: MCGM, India Institute of Technology Bombay.
- Disaster Risk Management Master Plan Project, Metro Manila, Philippines. This is a partnership project between UNDP/BCPR, the ProVention Consortium, the Pacific Disaster Center, and EMI. In January 2005, EMI entered into an agreement with the Metropolitan Manila Development Agency and the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology for the development and implementation of a Disaster Risk Management Master Plan (DRMMP) for Metro Manila. Through a highly inclusive and participatory process, a consensus-based Master Plan was crafted in August 2006 by the partners and stakeholders involved. The DRMMP led to significant changes in DRR practices in Metro Manila and the Philippines. It also resulted in the implementation of the Risk-Sensitive Urban Redevelopment Planning Project in Makati City which is an innovative approach to provide an in-situ urban redevelopment plan to a high-risk community combining disaster risk resiliency, livability and opportunities for socio-economic advancement.
- Disaster Risk Management Master Plan Project, Kathmandu, Nepal. Under the same partnering coalition as in the Metro Manila DRMMP, The DRMMP was initiated in Kathmandu in 2005, in collaboration with Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) and the National Society for Earthquake Technology (NSET) – Nepal. The DRRMP has provided one of the basis for the UN-Flagship DRR program for Nepal. It also paved the way for two related projects supported by the German Federal Foreign Office thru the German Committee for Disaster Reduction from 2007 to 2009. The first project aimed to develop a risk-sensitive land use plan for Kathmandu. The second project involved enhancing the disaster management capacity of KMC through training and creation of an office that would support the city’s DRR programs and coordinate local DRM functions with the national government and other relevant entities.
- Disaster Risk Management Master Plan Project, Amman, Jordan. The DRMMP was implemented in the Greater Amman Municipality from April 2007 to March 2009. It led to the development of the DRMMP Framework for Amman, which consisted of 47 DRR recommendations along eight core functions and responsibilities. These include legal and institutional aspects, emergency management, construction standards and practice, building earthquake resiliency, land use planning and environmental management, training and capacity building, R&D/knowledge management, and project management. Partners in the project were UNDP-BCPR, UNDP-Jordan, the Jordanian Civil Defense, and the Greater Amman Municipality.
- Strengthening Institutional and Operational Capabilities for Disaster Management. The project was geared towards strengthening capacities of Kathmandu Metropolitan City in emergency management, particularly in enhancing the institutional capacities of KMC in emergency and disaster management; building a disaster management system at KMC; and developing staff competency through specialized training. The project partners were KMC and NSET with funding from the German Foreign Affairs Office.
- Strengthening the Capacity of Philippine Local Governments in Disaster Risk Management. The World Bank and the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) Project partnered with EMI and three (3) other research and training centers/organizations in the Philippines to strengthen the capacities of the LGUs in reducing vulnerability to disaster impacts and in managing related risks.
- Partnership for Urban Risk Reduction (PURR). This is an adhoc coalition of 5 international organizations: United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), Earthquake and Megacities Initiative, Metropolis, CityNet, and ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability. PURR has the following goals: (1) Worldwide awareness campaigns about risk reduction in regions regularly affected by natural disasters; (2) Building capacity at the local level to foresee and manage risks by transferring technical know-how to local actors and decision-makers; (3) Setting up a global platform for local authorities and their partners in order to build and promote a sustainable strategy for disaster risk reduction within the broader international context.
- Disaster Risk Management Master Plan Project, Istanbul, Turkey. The DRMMP concept was first implemented in Istanbul after the 1999 Marmara Earthquake, leading to the development of the Istanbul Earthquake Master Plan (2002), which has been the basis for DRR investments by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM). In June 2007, EMI and the IMM renewed ties to undertake joint scientific activities related to the implementation of the Megacity Indicators System in Istanbul and to document the disaster management process and other disaster risk reduction projects undertaken by IMM.
- Natural Disaster Risk Management Training Program (NDRMP). This program is run jointly with the World Bank Institute for the last 5 years. It is composed on one mandatory introductory course on disaster risk management and 7 specialized courses covering a broad spectrum of disaster risk management and reduction topics. In 2010, the program broadened its global reach by providing learning opportunities on disaster risk reduction and management to 205 participants from 48 countries, primarily in Asia, Africa and Europe.