Enhancing Synergies for Disaster Prevention in the European Union

Fri, 01 Jul 2016 11:34:00 BST

“ESPREssO - Enhancing Synergies for disaster PREvention in the EurOpean Union” project, funded by the European Commission’s H2020 Programme (DRS-10-2015: Disaster Resilience & Climate Change topic 2: Natural Hazards: Towards risk reduction science and innovation plans at national and European level was recently launched in Naples, Italy.

Photo: ESPREssO team

The project will investigate the different legal, policy and science approaches across the European Union that address natural hazards and climate change adaptation

ESPREssO aims at contributing to a new strategic vision to approach natural risk reduction and climate change adaptation, thereby opening new frontiers for research and policy making. From this perspective it wants also to be of support to the EC research and development and to the Knowledge Centre on Disaster Risk Management. ESPREssO will specifically address the following objectives:

  • To propose ways to create more coherent national and European approaches on Disaster Risk Reduction, CC Adaptation and resilience strengthening;
  • To enhance risk management capabilities bridging the gap between science and legal/policy issues at local and national levels in six European Countries;
  • To address the issue of the regulation of preparation to trans-boundary crises. As indicated by the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, this is one of the main unsolved problems.

According to the specific objectives of ESPREssO, a “cross-boundary” approach will be adopted to propose ways to mitigate the differences and overcome the boundaries between three different challenges:

  1. Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction;
  2. Science vs legal/policy issues in DRR;
  3. National regulations for the preparation to trans-boundary crises.

Photo: Prof. Richard Haigh presenting ESPREssO challenge one

The ESPREssO team consists of partners having a well-known expertise in legal and governance issues and natural risk management, socio-economic aspects and resilience, hard science, statistical approaches to multi-risk and resilience.  ESPREssO is led by AMRA - Analisi e Monitoraggio del Rischio Ambientale Scarl, Italy. Other partners include:

  • GDRC, University of Huddersfield UK; 
  • GFZ- Helmholz - Zentrum Potsdam Deutsches GeoForshungsZentrum, Germany (the national research institution for geosciences in Germany);
  • BUREAU DE RECHERCHES GEOLOGIQUES ET MINIERES, France (the French national institute for research on earth and environmental sciences);
  • DKKV - Deutsches Komitee Katastrophenvorsorge e.V., Germany (The German Committee for Disaster Reduction);
  • EIDGENOESSISCHE TECHNISCHE HOCHSCHULE ZUERICH, Switzerland (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich; and
  • UCPH – Københavns Universitet, Denmark (the University of Copenhagen, Denmark)

This is a €2.06 million valued project which will run for 30 months. GDRC team include Prof. Dilanthi Amaratunga, Prof. Richard Haigh, Dr. Nuwan Dias and Kinkini Hemachandra

Photo (above): Prof. Dilanthi Amaratunga leading the discussion

Photo (below): GDRC ESPREssO team (from L to R) Dr Nuwan Dias, Prof. Dilanthi Amaratunga, Ms Kinkini Hemachandra, Prof. Richard Haigh.

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