IDRiM 2012 Conference
From surprise to Rationality: Managing unprecedented Large-Scale Disasters
The 3rd Conference of the International Society for Integrated Disaster Risk Management (IDRiM Society) was held at Beijing Normal University on 7-9 September 2012.
The purpose of the conference was to promote discussion on integrated risk governance issues for large-scale disasters. Researchers in the field of disaster risk research from developed countries in North America, Europe, and East Asia and developing countries in Asia, Africa, and South America are invited to gather in Beijing to take part in this conference. Conference participants will spend three days engaged in intensive discussions on the scientific, technical, economic, financial, and educational issues regarding large-scale disasters. The ultimate purpose is to find new approaches to coping with natural disasters, identify ways to fill the gap between science and implementation, and enhance collective decision making.
Achievement and Results
The IDRiM2012 Conference was a great success. The three day conference included two invited keynote speakers, two panel sessions with the participation of well-known experts in various fields, 12 special specialized parallel sessions and a Young Scientist interactive poster session by young researchers. There were a total of 162 participants from 31 countries, of which 83 were from outside of China.
The conference started with opening remarks from Prof. Fanghua Hao, Vice-President of Beijing Normal University and Prof. Norio Okada, President of the IDRiM Society. The opening remarks were followed by a keynote speech by Prof. Haresh Shah from Stanford University (United States) on Integrated disaster risk management. Highlights from the first day included a plenary panel session where invited experts presented arguments and promoted discussion regarding Critical Issues of Unprecedented Large Scale Disasters (LSD), and the well-attended Young Scientists interactive poster session with more than 30 participants. Parallel session topics included risk assessment and modeling of LSD and new trends and development of disaster risk research; a session on models and management options for Natech risks and a session on monitoring, forecasting and early warning systems for LSDs. The first day finished with a reception and launching of the Global University Consortium for Integrated Disaster Risk Governance.
Prof. Douglas Paton from University of Tasmania, Australia, provided an insightful keynote speech on Disaster Resilient Communities: Personal, Community, Societal and Cultural Influences. This was followed by a plenary panel session on Integrated Risk Governance and Global Change with the participation of distinguished guests from Europe, US, China and Japan. The second day included parallel sessions concerning economic consequence analysis of LSDs and the promotion of catastrophe insurance schemes for risk management of LSDs. Global change, environmental risks and adaption, as well as risk governance issues such as education, communication and collective decision-making were the topics of two other parallel sessions. The General Assembly of the IDRiM Society was also held on the second day, followed by the conference banquet which promoted friendly exchange and networking and was the opportunity to award papers presented for the Young Scientist poster session.
The third and final day of the conference started with an important discussion on planning and management of disaster recovery and reconstruction following LSDs. Parallel sessions covered topics such as multi-hazards and cascading effects, economic consequences of LSDs, and disaster preparedness and post-disaster governance issues based on lessons from Algeria, China, Japan and Taiwan. The conference was closed with a wrap-up and summary session on lessons learned and emerging issues from the conference.