Disaster Research 404

April 2, 2004

Table of Contents

  1. Student Paper Competition
  2. The Mary Fran Myers Award 2004 Request for Nominations
  3. National Mutual Aid and Resource Management Initiative
  4. New Quick Response Report
  5. Joint Infrastructure Interdependencies Research Program
  6. White Paper and Two Bibliographies
  7. Jobs, Jobs, Jobs
  8. Some New Web Resources
  9. Conferences and Training

1) Student Paper Competition

The study of hazards and disasters is highly interdisciplinary and relies on scholarly and professional input from a wide array of professions and academic disciplines. The Hazards Center is soliciting student papers from disciplines related to natural, human-made, or technological hazards or disasters for the first annual student paper competition. Papers can be literature reviews, case studies, descriptions of research results, or essays on related topics. Papers cannot have been accepted for publication at the time of submission, although papers under review may be submitted.

Winners in both the undergraduate and graduate categories will receive $100, have their papers published on the Natural Hazards Center web site, and have their papers submitted for review and potential publication in the Natural Hazards Review, a peer-reviewed scholarly journal.

Submissions are due June 15, 2004. Complete information, including paper length and formatting, is available at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/specialprojects.html. Contact Wendy Steinhacker, Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado, 482 UCB, Boulder, CO 80309-0482; e-mail: wendy.steinhacker@colorado.edu with any questions.

2) The Mary Fran Myers Award 2004 Request for Nominations

The Gender and Disaster Network (GDN) and the Natural Hazards Center invite nominations of individuals working in the hazards field who should be recognized for "efforts to advance women's careers in emergency management and the academy and for promoting gendered disaster research." Established in 2002, the Mary Fran Myers Award recognizes that vulnerability to disasters and mass emergencies is influenced by social, cultural, and economic structures that marginalize women and girls. The award was so named to recognize Mary Fran's sustained efforts to launch a worldwide network among disaster professionals for advancing women's careers and for promoting research on gender issues, disasters, emergency management, and higher education.

The intent of this award is to recognize people whose program-related activities, advocacy efforts, or research has had a lasting, positive impact in reducing hazards vulnerability for women and girls. The award committee is especially interested in soliciting nominations from countries outside the U.S. People whose work add to the body of knowledge on gender and disasters; is significant for the theory and/or practice of gender and disasters; or who have furthered opportunities for women to succeed in the hazards fields are eligible to receive the award.

Nominations are due June 1, 2004. Complete information about eligibility and award criteria, along with a list of past winners, can be found at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/mfmaward/. Contact Lori Peek, Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado, 482 UCB, Boulder, CO 80309-0482 USA; e-mail: lori.peek@colorado.edu with questions.

3) National Mutual Aid and Resource Management Initiative

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), has been working in concert with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA), and a cross-section of emergency responders to develop a national intrastate mutual aid agreement modeled after states that are currently participating in similar agreements. The goal of FEMA's "National Mutual Aid and Resource Management Initiative" is to enhance jurisdictional ability to respond to any incident through using mutual aid, and to create a national system that builds on existing agreements and compacts to enhance preparedness and the nation's ability to respond to emergencies at all levels.

Federal, state, and local officials from a wide array of organizations and associations are participating in the design of this program, which takes an all-hazards approach. They are in the process of resource typing, and consulting with stakeholders to design, coordinate, and market the initiative. Pilot training courses will begin in May 2004.

A draft brochure is available from the Emergency Management Association Compact (EMAC), an existing interstate mutual aid compact administered by NEMA, at http://www.emacweb.org/. There are 48 states, the District of Columbia, and two U.S. territories utilizing EMAC. FEMA's web site contains information about this program at http://www.fema.gov/preparedness/mutual_aid.shtm, along with a glossary of terms and definitions.

For more information contact Layoyed Hudgins, National Emergency Management Association, PO Box 11910, Lexington, KY 40578; (859) 244-8217; e-mail: lhudgins@csg.org.

4) New Quick Response Report

The Hazards Center announces the availability of a new Quick Response (QR) report titled QR 166: Damage Assessment After the Paso Robles (San Simeon, California) Earthquake: Lessons for Emergency Management by David McEntire and Jill Cope of the University of North Texas. The report explores damage assessment, an often-neglected area of emergency management study, using the San Simeon earthquake in Paso Robles, California (San Luis Obispo County) as a case study to identify lessons for the emergency management profession. The report's findings range from the importance and repetitive nature of damage assessment, to the need for coordination among the many actors involved in the post-disaster damage assessment function. The paper also provides background information about Paso Robles and the earthquake, and discusses data collection methods.

QR 166 is available free on-line at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/qr/qr166/qr166.html and is also available in PDF format. Information about the Quick Response program can be found at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/qr/.

5) Joint Infrastructure Interdependencies Research Program

The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada (PSEPC) have launched a joint program to fund research in the area of Canadian critical infrastructure interdependencies. The program, the Joint Infrastructure Interdependencies Research Program (JIIRP), will produce new science-based knowledge and practices to better assess, manage, and mitigate risks to Canadians from critical infrastructure interdependencies.

Under the program, scientists and engineers in the academic, industrial, and government sectors will work together to understand the connections between the country's major energy, communications, finance, health care, food, water, and transportation systems, and what happens when a system fails. Each is complex, but their interdependencies, which can leave them vulnerable to cascading collapses, are even less well understood.

JIIRP will fund innovative research projects with an emphasis on cross-disciplinary research, for a term of up to three years. Since research in this area will require experts and scientists from many different fields non-traditional approaches and collaborations are expected and encouraged.

A full program description and application instructions can be found at http://www.nserc.gc.ca/programs/jiirp_e.htm. The application deadline is September 1, 2004. For more information, contact Francis Lionnet; NSERC Communications; (613) 992-9001; e-mail: fzl@nserc.ca.

6) White Paper and Two Bibliographies

The Hazards Center announces the availability of three risk-related on-line resources.

"Informer Issue 2: Public Education for Earthquake Hazards," by Sarah Nathe, Paula Gori, Marjorie Greene, Elizabeth Lemersal, and Dennis Mileti, originally issued in 1999, has been updated. The update, titled "Public Hazards Communication and Education: The State of the Art," by the same authors, is available on-line in PDF format at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/informer/informerupdate.pdf.

Two accompanying bibliographies, "Public Hazards Communication Bibliography" and "Public Hazards Communication Annotated Bibliography" are available in PDF format as well at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/informer/pubhazbib.pdf and http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/informer/pubhazbibann.pdf. The bibliographies were compiled and annotated by Dennis Mileti, Jeannette Sutton, Barbara Vogt, John Sorensen, Rachel Bandy, Aaron Johnson, and Lori Peek.

7) Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

[Below are a few recent job vacancies that are related to some of the myriad activities in which DR readers engage. Please contact the organizations directly for more information.]

Hazard Mitigation Specialist (three positions)

Three hazard mitigation specialist positions are available with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in Washington, DC. Incumbents will exercise responsibilities related to the administration of disaster related mitigation grants; monitor and analyze database systems; and provide assistance and support to senior staff members in the ongoing management of the hazard mitigation grant program (HMGP). Other responsibilities include providing technical assistance about FEMA procedures, eligibility determinations, and grant performance reviews; and preparing a variety of correspondence about specific requests involving complex and sensitive subjects that must be clearly and concisely addressed.

Applications are due April 12, 2004. Applicants are urged to explicitly describe their experience as is relevant to the knowledge, skills, and abilities requirements found in the job announcement at http://www.fema.gov/career/index.jsp (IMC-03-520). Applications may be e-mailed to hire.me@fema.gov or mailed to FEMA, AR-HR-RSB, Building E, Room 113, 16825 South Seton Avenue, Emmitsburg, MD 21727.

Deputy Director/Risk Frontiers

The Natural Hazards Research Center at Macquarie University in Sydney Australia, is seeking a deputy director for "Risk Frontiers," an industry-funded center specializing in natural hazards risk assessment, with particular application to the insurance industry. Current interests focus on flood, hail, windstorm, wildland fire, earthquake, and volcanic risk modeling. The deputy director will assume responsibility for promoting the mission of "Risk Frontiers" and assisting in the growth of the center through research and development.

The ideal candidate will have an established research reputation in a relevant natural hazards field, a Ph.D. or equivalent industry experience, and the demonstrated ability to manage research projects and liaise with industry.

Applications are due May 2, 2004. Send cover letter, resume, and contact information for three references to John McAneney, Risk Frontiers, Macquarie University, NSW 2109; tel: +61-2-9850-9685; e-mail: jmcanene@els.mq.edu.au; http://www.es.mq.edu.au/NHRC.

Civil Engineer

The City of Fort Collins, Colorado, is looking to hire a civil engineer with flood warning and floodplain management experience. The incumbent will be responsible for the design, installation, and maintenance of an ALERT stream and precipitation gage network; interpreting streamflow and precipitation gage information; and assisting with emergency preparedness and response activities related to flooding. Requirements include a bachelors degree in civil engineering, hydrology, or related field; and a minimum of 3 years of related experience, including project management related to design, operation and maintenance of an ALERT gaging network.

Applications are due April 9, 2004. To apply, send resume and cover letter to the City of Fort Collins, Job #4014, Human Resources Department, 215 North Mason, P.O. Box 580, Fort Collins, CO 80522; (970) 221-6535; http://www.fcgov.com/humanresources.

Hazards Geologist

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geological Survey and Resource Assessment, seeks to hire a geologist, engineering geologist, or close equivalent who has experience in evaluating geologic hazards, especially those stemming from earthquakes in the New Madrid Seismic Zone.

A complete job description is available at http://www.oa.mo.gov/pers/ClassSpecs/4764.htm(Note that this link provides a generic Geologist III job description and therefore encompasses a large number of possible job duties; the actual duties of this position are in the area of geologic hazards and earthquakes.) Applicants must submit a "merit system" application at http://www.oa.mo.gov/pers/appjob.html.

Contact Patrick Mulvany, Geological Survey and Resource Assessment Division, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, 111 Fairgrounds Road, P.O. Box 250, Rolla, MO 65402; (573) 368-2139; e-mail: patrick.mulvany@dnr.mo.gov with specific questions.

Applied Disaster and Emergency Studies Position

Brandon University in Manitoba, Canada, invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position in its Applied Disaster and Emergency Studies (A-DES) program. The successful candidate will have practical or applied experience related to disasters and emergencies and an understanding of the challenges posed by interdisciplinary approaches to risks, hazards, disasters. In addition, the successful candidate will have a proven record of teaching, planning, research and scholarship. The position requires a Masters degree (Ph.D. preferred) in management, planning, psychology, public administration, sociology, or other relevant discipline; experience with an all-hazards approach to disaster management; and the ability to link university-based activities with public and private agencies and institutions.

Applications are due May 28, 2004. Send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, transcripts, and contact information for three referees to: Janet Wright, Brandon University, 270 18th Street, Brandon, MB, R7A 6A9 Canada; http://www.brandonu.ca/academic/ADES/Index.htm.

8) Some New Web Resources

[Below are some new or updated Internet resources we've discovered. For an extensive list of useful Internet sites dealing with hazards, see http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/resources/sites.html.]

The Center for Research on the Epidemiology for Disasters (CRED), located in Belgium, has launched a redeveloped, more user friendly web site. The site contains a number of global disaster databases, publications lists, and a searchable bibliography.

The Center for Robot Assisted Search and Rescue works on new technologies for search and rescue and deploys them as part of an international response support team. Their web site contains resources, course offerings, conferences, and other information related to human-robot interactions.

The Asian Disaster Preparedness Center in Thailand now has a PDF brochure that comprehensively lists its many course offerings and workshops.

The goal of the National Bioterrorism Hospital Preparedness Program is to aid states and territories to improve the capacity of the health care system, including hospitals, emergency departments, outpatient facilities, EMS systems, and poison control centers, to respond to incidents requiring mass immunization, isolation, decontamination, diagnosis, and treatment, in the aftermath of terrorism or other public health emergencies.

This web site, maintained by the Washington Hospital Center in Washington, DC, houses an extensive amount of information on hazards, hospitals, mass casualty response, and more, with the goal of creating an interactive information clearinghouse.

Get your amateur radio license on-line from the National Association for Amateur Radio!

"Messages in the Dust: What Are the Lessons of the Environmental Health Response to the Terrorist Attacks of September 11?" published by the National Environmental Health Association is available in html format on-line.

EMCOMM is a web site dedicated to emergency communications personnel, both professional and volunteer. It contains links to other sites, an electronic newsletter, and information about upcoming events and training.

The specific challenge of this annual firefighting robot contest is to build a computer controlled robot that can move through a model floor plan structure of a house, find a lit candle and then extinguish it in the shortest time subject to a few operating factors.

"Risk Management for Small Business" is a new on-line publication from the Public Enterprise Risk Institute (PERI) that focuses on helping small businesses identify and analyze risk.

9) Conferences and Training

[Below are some recent announcements received by the Natural Hazards Center. A comprehensive list of upcoming hazards-related meetings and training is available from our web site: http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/conf.html.]

Rapid Environmental Impact in Disasters. Sponsor: World Vision International. Washington, DC: April 26-27, 2004. Disasters and disaster relief can have negative impacts, and environmental conditions can contribute to or worsen disaster impacts. This workshop is designed for field and headquarters staff responsible for post-disaster needs assessments and emergency project design, and those working as environmental specialists. For more information contact Ben Campbell, World Vision International, 800 West Chestnut Avenue, Monrovia, CA 91016; e-mail: bcampbel@wvi.org; http://www.wvi.org.

2004 National Flood Conference: Perking up the Program. Sponsor: Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Seattle, Washington, May 2-5, 2004. Geared toward claims adjusters, developers, state and local officials, and others, this conference includes seminars, town hall meetings, and workshops on floodplain mapping, legal issues, community involvement, funding, and more. Information is available from the 2004 National Flood Conference, 7700 Hubble Drive, Lanham, MD 20706; (301) 918-1439; e-mail: CatherineR.King@associates.dhs.gov; http://www.fema.gov/nfip/2004conf.shtm.

2004 Conference on Response to Terrorism. Sponsor: University of Kansas Fire and Rescue Training Center. Kansas City, Kansas: May 10-12, 2004. This annual conference is geared toward personnel who may respond first to a terrorism incidents. This includes law enforcement, fire, emergency medical services, emergency managers, public health employees, the military, and public works professionals. Break-out sessions include: terrorism risk assessment, weapons of mass destruction, hospital preparedness, bioterrorism response, and more. Complete information can be obtained from Shaun Coffey, University of Kansas, Continuing Education, Lawrence, KS 66045; (785) 864-9188; e-mail: shaunc@ku.edu; http://www.kuce.org/fst/crt/index.html.

The Media and Climate: Building Partnerships Workshop. Sponsor: Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADCP). Bangkok, Thailand: June 3-4, 2004. This workshop aims to strengthen and sustain partnerships between the media and climate communities in Southeast Asia to foster accurate and effective communication about the nature and implications of climate variability and change. Workshop details can be obtained from Lolita Bildan, ADCP, P.O.Box 4, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand; tel:(66-2) 516-5900-10; e-mail: lolita@adpc.net; http://www.adpc.net.

The 2004 Government Symposium on Information Sharing and Homeland Security. Sponsor: Government Emerging Technology Alliance (GETA). Orlando, Florida: June 28-30, 2004. This symposium will identify the challenges with integrating information and intelligence, and will focus on solutions using case studies and best practices from Chicago, New York, Florida, and California. The intent of this conference is to find solutions that help to close the gaps existing between federal agencies and those found between the federal level and the state and local level. For more information contact National Conference Services, Inc. (NCSI), 6440-C Dobbin Road, Columbia, MD 21045; (888) 603-8899; http://federalevents.com/ishs/.

America's Fire Expo 2004. Sponsor: National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Miami Beach, Florida: July 20-22, 2004. This conference is directed toward those involved with fire protection systems and equipment, special hazards, chemical and hazardous material storage and handling, building fire protection, life safety and electrical installations. For more information contact ROC Exhibitions, Inc., 1963 University Lane, Lisle, IL 60532; (630) 271-8210; e-mail: fire@rocexhibitions.com; http://www.nfpa.org.

30th Congress of the International Geographical Union: One Earth, Many Worlds. Glasgow, Scotland: August 15-20, 2004. The extensive and varied program includes topics of special interest to hazards researchers, including: desertification, coastal systems geomorphology, changing demographics, health and environment, population, flooding, and more. Registration information can be obtained from Meeting Makers, Jordanhill Campus, 76 Southbrae Drive, Glasgow G13 1PP, Scotland, UK; tel: +44 (0) 141 434 1500; e-mail: igc2004@meetingmakers.co.uk; http://www.meetingmakers.co.uk/igc-uk2004/index.html.

Urban Flood Mitigation (UFM) Course. Sponsors: Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADCP), ITC Netherlands. Manila, Philippines: August 28-September 3, 2004. This course will focus on urban flood mitigation issues, specifically on the impact of floods and structural and non-structural interventions available to mitigate urban impact with the goal of integrating GIS applications to these issues. Workshop details can be obtained from ADCP, P.O.Box 4, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand; tel:(66-2) 516-5900-10; e-mail: audmp@adpc.net; http://www.adpc.net.

NFPA Fall Education Conference. Sponsor: National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Miami Beach, Florida: November 13-17, 2004. This conference will focus on fire and life line safety through accredited training sessions and other sessions. Complete information can be obtained from Linda Baily, NFPA, One Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169; (617) 984-7030; e-mail: lbailey@nfpa.org; http://www.nfpa.org.

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