The Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience was held in Tokyo from 23 to 25 November 2017 with 228 participants from 42 countries. To implement the priorities for action in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) 2015–2030, the Forum aimed to encourage all stakeholders to develop guidelines for supporting national platforms for DRR by making the best use of science and technology and producing a synthesis report on disaster science and technology.
During the Forum, seven working groups held presentations and panel discussions that corresponded to the four priorities for action in the Sendai Framework (1. Understanding disaster risk; 2. Strengthening disaster risk governance; 3. Investing in DDR; and 4. “Build Back Better”), as well as on Interdisciplinary collaboration, National platforms, and Synthesis report.
At the end of the Forum, seven policy briefs, as well as “Tokyo Statement 2017,” were adopted. In this special issue of the Journal of Disaster Research, co-chairs of the working groups summarize their discussions and recommendations for each working group. Additional papers on the role of private sectors and Nation’s Synthesis are also included in the issue.
We thank all the authors and reviewers of the papers, as well as all the participants of the Forum for their valuable contributions.
“Understanding disaster risk” is the first priority action of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030. During the Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience, held in Tokyo in November 2017, one of the working groups focused on this priority action and discussed the key aspects associated with understanding disaster risk. These included root causes and disaster risk drivers, disaster risk data, disaster risk assessment, disaster risk mapping, and collaboration among stakeholders. This paper reviews and illustrates the above topics by using three examples of the most devastating disasters of recent times: the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, the 2010 Haiti earthquake, and the 2011 Great East Japan (Tohoku) Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster. The Indian Ocean tsunami, generated by the gigantic Sumatra-Andaman earthquake (magnitude M 9.1), caused 228,000 casualties from 14 countries because of its unexpected magnitude, the lack of knowledge on tsunamis and absence of an early warning system, and high levels of vulnerable populations, particularly elderly people, children, women, and foreign tourists. The 2010 Haiti earthquake, despite its smaller magnitude of M 7.0, also caused a similar number of casualties because of very high levels of vulnerability and exposure. Particularly relevant was the non-existence of building codes, political instability, extreme poverty, and poor health conditions. The 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster, caused by the gigantic Tohoku earthquake (M 9.0), produced approximately 22,000 casualties with a large proportion of elderly people, mostly because of wide spread, huge tsunamis. It also triggered the accident at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Station, which is an example of a natural hazard triggering technological disaster. By examining these cases and based on the discussions carried out during the Forum, the working group adopted five recommendations.
The importance of disaster risk governance was stated in the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) in 2005. However, effective measures towards strengthening disaster risk governance from the science and technology community have not been sufficiently implemented since then. In the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR) in 2015, “strengthening disaster risk governance to manage disaster risk” was established as one of the four action items, and many roles for the science and technology community were stated in the SFDRR. This report introduces the discussions and outcomes regarding the role of the science and technology community in strengthening disaster risk governance at the Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience 2017.
The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 established “Investing in Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience” as Priority Action 3 with 17 actions in national and local levels and 9 actions in global and regional levels. So far, however, the budgets for disaster risk reduction are mainly used for post-disaster emergency response, recovery, and reconstruction in many countries. In the working sessions of Priority Action 3 of the Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience 2017, we discussed the actions that should be taken by the science, technology, and education sectors for an increase in proactive disaster risk reduction investment. This paper highlights the working group discussion, particularly focusing on the roles of science, technology, and education. Seven recommendations for promoting the implementation of the Priority Action 3 were adopted by the Forum as the final output from the working sessions of Priority Action 3.
This paper outlines the process of formalizing Priority Action 4, “Build Back Better,” in recovery, rehabilitation, and reconstruction in Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030. We propose this formalization by introducing the background and existing framework of recovery, rehabilitation, and reconstruction, a case-study of Post-War Japan, and the outcome of discussions implemented in the Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience 2017 held at the Science Council of Japan in Tokyo on November 23–25, 2017. This paper also summarizes the results of discussions regarding further development of Priority Action 4.
This paper describes interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches inevitably necessary for effective disaster risk management, introducing examples involving the tsunami hazard map in Sendai, volcanic eruption in Iceland, and river flooding in Thailand. On the basis of the conversations conducted at the Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience 2017 held at the Science Council of Japan in Tokyo on November 23–25, 2017, this paper summarizes the results of the discussion for further development of these approaches. Some international initiatives are also briefly introduced.
The Guiding Principles of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 state that “(a) Each State has the primary responsibility to prevent and reduce disaster risk, including through international, regional, subregional, transboundary and bilateral cooperation,” and “(b) Disaster risk reduction requires that responsibilities be shared by central Governments and relevant national authorities, sectors and stakeholders, as appropriate to their national circumstances and systems of governance.” The need for a multi-sectoral national mechanism for disaster reduction was recognized during the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR) 1990–2000, and the responsibility was inherited to the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR). The United Nations General Assembly Resolution 56/195, which was adopted in December 2001, called upon Governments to establish national platforms or focal points for disaster reduction. At the Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience, held in Tokyo in November 2017, a plenary session focusing on National Platforms was organized and ways for the effective integration of the knowledge and expertise available within the national science and technology community in the national disaster risk reduction activities were discussed. This paper examines how the idea of national platform for disaster reduction evolved since the beginning of IDNDR. This paper further reviews and illustrates the previous discussions on National Platforms from 2005 to 2015 as well as existing guidelines on National Platforms. Based on the discussions carried out during the Forum, five recommendations adopted by the Forum are introduced.
The private sector is an important actor in disaster risk reduction, and its importance has been highlighted after the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction was adopted in 2015. The role of private sectors vary from corporate social responsibility activities and creating a corporate community interface to ensuring that innovative technical solutions for disaster risk reduction are a core business. This study elaborates on different models and examples of these roles. Three critical examples come from Japan, the Philippines, and Malaysia, where private organizations work closely with national governments and enter into partnership agreements, which ensure the sustainability of their involvement. Other core examples are from civil society, where the private sector works for demand-driven innovation. One challenging issue of private sector involvement is that of the small and medium-sized enterprises, which are often unregistered and need special attention during disasters and post-disaster recovery.
This paper proposes an international collaborative project to construct an online synthesis system initiated by the Japanese National Committee for Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR). The purpose of this project is to facilitate knowledge consilience on disaster and environmental risk reduction by improving disaster resilience, which is an indispensable element of sustainable development. This system will provide a free internet environment, named Design Trend Press, for users in each country or region. All stakeholders involved in disaster risk reduction can make and register their own contributions in various forms on this system, using their own language in terms of seven targets and four priority actions specified in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR, or Sendai Framework). To make this project successful, an international advisory board should be established to supervise the ontology of the keywords to be used for the classification and categorization of individual entries.
The Hyogo Framework for Action, which was adopted in 2005, promotes the creation and strengthening of national platforms designated as national integrated disaster risk reduction (DRR) mechanisms. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (the Sendai Framework) emphasizes the role played by science and technology in DRR decision-making and the importance of the support provided by the international scientific and technological community in DRR. The Global Forum on Science and Technology for Disaster Resilience 2017 (Tokyo Forum 2017) agreed to formulate guidelines supporting national platforms for DRR by efficiently utilizing scientific and technological tools and producing a synthesis report on disaster science and technology. Since each country is attributed the primary responsibility for implementing the aforementioned agreement according to its national needs and conditions, it should develop a mechanism that allows all stakeholders to share information on science and technology for DRR in their own language. Each national platform should review the status and issues of ongoing DRR efforts based on scientific and technological knowledge, enhance multi-sectoral discussion among various stakeholders about how DRR should be implemented in the country, and achieve consensus on the practical measures to be designed and implemented from a macro perspective. This paper defines a series of actions to be performed by the national platform of each country as the “Nation’s Synthesis” and proposes the relevant functions and international cooperation frameworks to be established.
The World Bosai Forum was held at the Sendai International Center and Kawauchi Hagi Hall, Tohoku University, bringing together 947 participants from over 42 countries. This was nearly double the number of participants that we had initially expected. Proactive and meaningful discussions were held by a wide range of officials and experts from domestic and overseas industries, governments, academia, and private sectors, as well as by local citizens. From our partnership with the Asian Conference on Urban Disaster Reduction (ACUDR) and International Symposium on New Technologies for Urban Safety of Mega Cities in Asia (USMCA), we had a total of 126 participants.
We successfully created a platform for building international cooperation to share and resolve the current situation and handle various challenges for Bosai or disaster risk reduction. Practical and effective discussions have contributed to raising and promoting awareness of Bosai and the Sendai Framework 2015–2030 to the world from Sendai. Our first World Bosai Forum was concluded with productive outcomes, and its future meetings will be held every 2 years.
The guest editors of this special issue are pleased to publish valuable academic papers presented at the first World Bosai Forum. As you may notice, this research stems from a wide variety of current issues. The nature of interdisciplinary approaches may be unique to the World Bosai Forum, and the guest editors hope that this special issue will contribute to enhanced recognition of the Forum.
This study overviews “the Pre-WBF Festival – Learning from the disaster, bridging to the future: held in partnership with the Science Agora” (the Pre-WBF Festival), and recounts its achievements. This was a cultural, admission-free public event, held as the opening event of the first “World Bosai Forum/International Disaster Risk Conference in Sendai” (WBF). The Pre-WBF Festival was planned primarily by academics with a view towards “passing on experiences of the Great East Japan Earthquake,” “bridging the divide between academia and society,” “success of the WBF,” and so on. Parties involved in media provided advice on onstage presentations and public relations activity. The event, which had 662 participants from inside and outside of Japan, was a success. An analysis of the results of a questionnaire demonstrates that the participants understood the intentions of the event and reacted very favorably. Although participation of younger generations remains an issue, the Pre-WBF Festival is thought to be an effective method to connect academia and citizens. In addition, if such an event is held regularly, it can successfully pass on disaster experience in the future.
Six and a half years after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE), recovery and reconstruction have been steadily progressing in terms of infrastructure and town development. However, it is a fact that there are still many problems to be tackled in some areas. In addition, communicating the lessons learned from the GEJE is important and should be promoted to improve disaster management in Japan and overseas. The Tohoku Regional Development Bureau (TRDB) held a symposium, “Efforts for Recovery and Reconstruction from the GEJE,” at the World Bosai Forum (WBF) on November 27, 2017. Mayors from the disaster areas, Rikuzentakata city in Iwate prefecture, Ishinomaki city in Miyagi prefecture, and Shinchi town in Fukushima prefecture, and a director of the TRDB presented their projects aiming to “build back better,” and they discussed how they had made efforts toward recovery and reconstruction, mainly in terms of infrastructure and town development. It was confirmed in the discussion that for the reconstruction, steadily advancing safe and secure town development, including multiple defense, was necessary. In addition, software measures, such as disaster education and evacuation drills, are important, as are hardware improvements through reconstruction. Both hardware and software countermeasures should be like a two wheels. It was also asserted that passing down the memories and the lessons of the disaster, not allowing their memories to fade away with time, was important. The speakers showed a variety of approaches to transmitting their memories to future generations in their areas or projects. Then, they emphasized that if people prepared for disaster based on these lessons in advance, there would surely be less damage. Finally, speakers shared the recognition that to realize the above, many actors in the Tohoku district should mutually cooperate to transmit the situation of reconstruction and the lessons of the GEJE.
The DIM2SEA research project aims to increase urban resilience to large-scale disasters. We are engaged in developing a prototype Dynamic Integrated Model for Disaster Management and Socioeconomic Analysis (DIM2SEA) that will give disaster officials, stakeholders, urban engineers and planners an analytic tool for mitigating some of the worst excesses of catastrophic events. This is achieved by harnessing state-of-the-art developments in damage assessment, spatial simulation modeling, and Geographic Information System (GIS). At the heart of DIM2SEA is an agent-based model combined with post-disaster damage assessment and socioeconomic impact models. The large amounts of simulated spatial and temporal data generated by the agent-based models are fused with the socioeconomic profiles of the target population to generate a multidimensional database of inherently “synthetic” big data. Progress in the following areas is reported here: (1) Synthetic population generation from census tract data into agent profiling and spatial allocation, (2) developing scenarios of building damage due to earthquakes and tsunamis, (3) building debris scattering estimation and road network disruption, (4) logistics regarding post-disaster relief distribution, (5) the labor market in post-disaster urban dynamics, and (6) household insurance behavior as a reflection of urban resilience.
We present outcomes of our collaborative research between tsunami engineering laboratory, Tohoku University and the Willis Research Network (WRN) on global tsunami risk assessment since 2010. First we assessed tsunami hazards in Indian Ocean and west Pacific from major earthquakes based on historical records. After the 2011 Japan tsunami, various kind of fragility functions were developed for human casualty, buildings, marine vessels, etc based on the actual data. Especially, detailed tsunami hazard assessments were performed in many areas using fine bathymetry and topography data all over Japan including hazards from the worst case tsunamigenic earthquakes provided by central government and local governments in Hokkaido, Japan Sea and Nankai Trough. These results from the detailed hazard and vulnerability assessment were used for detailed tsunami risk in Japan. The Willis’s Japan tsunami model was then first released in December 2014. The model have been updating based on the updated or revised tsunami sources model and fragility functions. Detailed tsunami hazards from potential tsunami events in the Bay of Bengal, South China Sea and some parts of Indonesia were also performed in 2014. In October 2016, our contribution on the historical and future tsunami hazard assessment in global scale based on historical records over the last 400 years was conducted as an activity to increase tsunami awareness as part of World Tsunami Awareness Day. The current activities are to extend the target areas in Japan to Okinawa and assessing disaster risk reduction based on the present and planned tsunami countermeasures. We present the outcomes of the collaborative research done since 2010 by the Tsunami Engineering Laboratory of Tohoku University and the Willis Research Network (WRN) on global tsunami risk assessment. First, we assessed, based on historical records, the tsunami hazards in the Indian Ocean and western Pacific from major earthquakes. Since the 2011 Japan tsunami, various kinds of fragility functions have been developed for human casualties, buildings, marine vessels, etc., based on the actual data. Detailed tsunami hazard assessments have been performed in many areas of Japan using fine bathymetry and topography data from all over Japan, including data on hazards from the worst-case tsunamigenic earthquakes. These data have been provided by the Cabinet Office, Japan. The results from the detailed hazard and vulnerability assessments were used for detailed tsunami risk assessments in Japan. The Willis Japan tsunami model was then released in December 2014. The model has been updated based on the updated or revised tsunami source model and fragility functions. Detailed tsunami hazards from potential tsunami events in the Bay of Bengal, South China Sea, and some parts of Indonesia were also performed in 2014. In October 2016, our contribution to the historical and future tsunami hazard assessment on a global scale based on historical records over the last 400 years was conducted as an activity to increase tsunami awareness as part of World Tsunami Awareness Day. The current activities are to extend the target areas in Japan to Okinawa and to assess the disaster risk reduction based on the present and planned tsunami countermeasures.
An outline of “Sustainable Community Development for Disaster Resilience and Human Resources Development for Disaster Risk Reduction – Katahira-Style Disaster Resilient Community Development –” presented as a technical session at the World Bosai Forum / International Disaster and Risk Conference in Sendai held in November 2017 is introduced to contribute to the promotion of independent and sustainable activities for disaster risk reduction based on communities around the world.
Complex disasters may occur as a result of a natural disaster combined with an industrial or a technological disaster. These are also called “natural-hazard triggered technological (natech) disasters.” Currently, there is increasing awareness of the hazards of these natech disasters. Natural disasters could trigger a technological disaster including oil spills and the release of hazardous and flammable materials and toxic chemicals, causing cascading events. The impact of the damage on public health and safety could be catastrophic, as it may result in massive loss of life, environmental destruction, and asset and property loss. Moreover, it could cause business disruptions and affect a country’s reputation. This paper describes a case study on the application of disaster risk reduction and management for natech disasters in Cilegon, Indonesia. We introduce the analysis of risk assessment conducted in Cilegon, the preparedness of the Cilegon City government, a contingency plan that has been developed, and the state of disaster preparedness in industrial zones. Natural and technological disaster risks as well as several emergency preparedness efforts are discussed and multiple stakeholders are identified. The paper serves as a foundation for future research to address natech disasters.
Sustainable organizations are needed for sustainable societies. This study takes particular note of a student-centered practice focused on long-term reconstruction activities after the Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE) and reveals its developmental processes and internal structure. Kizuki (with-it-ness) was the driving impetus for the sustainable organization, in which each staff member constructed, respected, and shaped their kizuki to take deliberate action. In using the theory of a learning organization, it was possible to improve dynamically and explain holistically the team performance, from which a practical model was developed that could enhance the quality of disaster volunteering and assist in the understanding of transformative processes involved in these types of activity systems.
In studies of disasters, cases of religious communities providing support to victims at times of disaster have been reported. Such support can be understood as a function of social capital within religious communities. This paper considers the case studies of disaster relief activities provided by a Muslim community and a Soka Gakkai Buddhist community in Japan after the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011 and the Kumamoto Earthquake in 2016. It also analyzes how each religious community functioned from the viewpoints of three kinds of social capital: “bonding,” “bridging,” and “linking” and identify challenges faced by religious communities at times of disaster.
Several traditional building group districts exist in Japan as a system for preserving the remaining historical villages and townscapes of the country, along with their surrounding environment. In the northern Kanto region of Japan, there remain examples of many dozo-style structures called “Dozo-dukuri,” forming a distinctive historical townscape. In the 2011 Tohoku Region Pacific Offshore Earthquake, the traditional townscapes and dozo-style structures of the Kanto region were seriously damaged. When restoring the walls of damaged dozo-style structures to a sound condition, demolishing and reconstructing all the mud requires considerable labor; moreover, few modern artisans can construct mud walls. However, if there was a method that could recover the structural performance of the walls immediately via partial repair, the restoration of the walls could again become economical. Therefore, in this study, we first surveyed the specifications of mud walls in the northern Kanto region. Then, we performed horizontal loading tests on full-scale walls produced according to the survey results to determine the structural performance of walls under a horizontal force, e.g., an earthquake. Further, a test specimen damaged by a horizontal force was repaired, and a horizontal loading test was performed again. The results elucidated the structural performance recoverability obtained by the proposed repair method.