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Operationalizing an “All-of-Society” Approach to Reduce Disaster-Risk and Build Resilience

Jane Katz



Wednesday, June 29, 2022


Multifunction Hall Room 15
Global Urban Development
United States of America
Building Resilience for Sustainable Urban Futures
NE 155


In 2020, the world experienced more than 389 climate induced disasters. These events affected 98.4 million people and resulted in 15,080 deaths. Although we have seen years with much higher magnitudes of fatalities as the 2017 Haiti earthquake upward of 100,000 and the 2004 Sri Lanka tsunami reported at 21,715 deaths. The indirect effects of these events can be anticipated to be even larger, because of the economic losses due to these events being at least US$171.3 billion. The American Geophysical Union journal Earth’s Future reported that 57% of structures in the contiguous United States are exposed to potentially devastating natural hazards such as floods, tornadoes, and wildfires, especially in cities. The frequency of climate-induced disasters (CID) has tripled in the last three decades, driving the World Economic Forum to identify them as the most likely and most impactful risks worldwide. With more than 70% of the world population expected to be living in cities by 2050, ensuring the resilience of urban infrastructure systems under CID is crucial. Many of these consequences could have been avoided. Lives could have been saved and money spent on disaster response could have been used to improve people's quality of lives and reduce disaster risk to avoid future hazards. It is estimated that for every $1 invested in disaster risk reduction one saves up to $15 in disaster response and recovery. These challenges notwithstanding, we can strengthen resilience for individuals, communities, and nations by applying preventative, risk-informed approaches to development and decision-making, especially for those vulnerable populations and disproportionately affected by disasters. Yet, approaches that governments choose can radically impact the outcomes that they seek to address if they work at cross-purposes with the people they are trying to help. An all-of-society approach was called for by the Sendai Framework in support of effective disaster risk at all levels. In 2018, the United Nations Office of Disaster Risk Reduction established the Stakeholder Engagement Mechanism (SEM) to leverage the voice and action of stakeholders in support of the implementation of the Sendai Framework and integration of disaster risk reduction into the broader 2030 Agenda, and ultimately reach the vision of a sustainable and resilient world for people, planet, and nature. This session will bring together representatives of the multi-stakeholder groups of the SEM, local authorities and government representatives to an open dialogue that focuses on sharing successful, inclusive models to achieve reduced disaster risk, loss and damage and build greater resilience.


• Enhanced evidence-based knowledge and awareness of climate induced loss and damage in the built environment. • Share practices and strategies to reduce the risk for climate induced loss and damage, methods and early warning systems to protect citizens and save lives, especially for vulnerable and marginalized communities such as women, children, people with disabilities and older persons. • Facilitate an honest, transparent discussion among all stakeholders about challenges and solutions to address community needs and engage them in the process of building climate resilient communities.

Session speakers

Mr. Nazmul Huq
Head of the Resilient Development Programme
ICLEI--Local Governments for Sustainability
Ms. Crystal Bergemann
Senior Advisor for Climate, Office of the Secretary
HUD-U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
Ms. Jane Katz
Vice Chair; Representative to UNDRR/Sendai Stakeholder Advisory Group
Global Urban Development, SEM, GAP
Mr. Carlos Kaiser
Executive Director
ONG Inclusiva-People with Disabilities
Mr. Luis Carvalho
Coordenador SMPC e Comandante PM, Children and elderly population building resilience initiative
Municipality of Amadora