March 21, 2006


  1. New Quick Response Report from the Natural Hazards Center
  2. USGS Announces Earthquake Research Grants
  3. NIH Announces Rapid Assessment Post-Impact of Disaster Grants
  4. Drought Meeting Announcement and Call for Posters
  5. Call for Presentations: IAEM Annual Conference
  6. “Gender and Disaster Sourcebook” Now Available
  7. Reminder: Hazards and Disasters Student Paper Competition Deadline
  8. Some New Web Resources
  9. Conferences and Training
  10. Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

1) New Quick Response Report from the Natural Hazards Center

A new Quick Response report is available from the Natural Hazards Center and can be accessed online at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/qr/qrrepts.html.

QR182 Hurricane Stan Response in Guatemala, by Robert Hinshaw. 2006. This research was conducted one month after Hurricane Stan caused major flooding and mudslides in western Guatemala in October 2005. The levels of interclass and interethnic cooperation and the role of the military in the response and recovery for Hurricane Stan were compared with the aftermath of the 1976 earthquake in the same region. Losses due to Stan were spread much more universally across divisions of wealth and ethnicity, and greater cooperation in evacuation and relief efforts was observed. The political ramification of the military’s role in the relief effort was found to require additional time for further analysis.

2) USGS Announces Earthquake Research Grants

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has announced that it will award up to $5.5 million in National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) grants for earthquake research in 2007. Interested researchers can review the grant announcement and apply online at http://www.grants.gov/. Applications are due May 2, 2006.

In 2006, the USGS received 272 proposals and awarded $5.5 million in NEHRP grants that resulted in 96 research grants. Funding was awarded to universities, state geological surveys, and private institutions. Key projects included cataloging earthquakes in Southern California to better prepare emergency services, the public, and the media about earthquakes; providing seismic hazard estimations so communities and critical institutions can engineer their buildings and roads to be structurally sound; and providing data on ground shaking to help minimize damage. For a complete list of all projects and outcomes, visit the USGS Web site at http://erp-web.er.usgs.gov/.

3) NIH Announces Rapid Assessment Post-Impact of Disaster Grants

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued a program announcement for Rapid Assessment Post-Impact of Disaster (RAPID) grants. The purpose of this program is to provide a rapid funding mechanism for research on the postimpact of disasters to permit access to a disaster area in the immediate aftermath of the event. Prompt assessment may be crucial to many kinds of mental health disaster studies, including those that focus on service seeking, on efficacy of outreach or prevention efforts, and on identifying high risk victims on the basis of early response. The RAPID grants are designed to provide a limited sum of money for early assessment to investigators who intend to use the preliminary data from this initial effort as a basis for a subsequent full research application.

For the full announcement and information on application procedures, visit http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-06-253.html and reference program announcement number PAR-06-253. Applications must be submitted electronically through http://www.grants.gov/ using the SF424 forms and application instruction guide.

4) Drought Meeting Announcement and Call for Posters

This September, the Geological Society of America and partners, including the Natural Hazards Center, will convene a participatory conference in Boulder, Colorado, titled Managing Drought and Water Scarcity in Vulnerable Environments: Creating a Roadmap for Change in the United States. The goals for the conference are to create a forum for improving planning and management of drought and water scarcity in the United States and to stimulate national debate through the publication of a science- and policy-based discussion document. The focus of the meeting will be on identifying successful strategies and developing a decisive action plan.

Poster presentations on case studies, innovative research, and outreach efforts are invited on the following topics:

  • Hydrologic aspects of drought (past, present, and future)
  • Biologic aspects of drought, including quantitative ecosystem impacts
  • Economic aspects of drought (historical, contemporary, future)
  • Risk-based approaches to drought, including probabilistic risk assessment
  • Qualitative and quantitative measures of confidence in drought analyses
  • Public policy approaches for managing and mitigating drought impacts
  • Facilitating collaboration of multiple stakeholders
  • Impact of global climate change on drought management and water scarcity
  • Enhanced drought prediction, monitoring, and impact assessment

The conference dates are September 18-20, 2006. Abstracts may be submitted between April 1 and June 26, 2006. For more information, visit http://www.geosociety.org/meetings/06drought/.

5) Call for Presentations: IAEM Annual Conference

The International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) has issued a call for presentations for the IAEM 2006 Annual Conference and Exhibit in Orlando, Florida, November 12-15, 2006. Presentations should be related to the conference’s theme, “Going All the Way...Putting Plans Into Action,” to the extent possible. Speakers are expected to provide a presentation description that can be used to promote the program, their biographical information and references, and, if chosen, reference materials or a speaking outline for their session. Submissions are due March 31, 2006, via e-mail using the official form. For more information on the conference and to download the form, visit http://www.iaem.com/events/annual/intro.htm.

6) “Gender and Disaster Sourcebook” Now Available

The Gender and Disaster Sourcebook is an electronic compilation of international resources on policy, practice, and research designed to help address gender concerns in disaster risk reduction. Developed by an international writing team over the past year, the sourcebook was supported by the Public Entity Risk Institute (PERI) and the Pacific Disaster Center of the East-West Center.

Currently, a limited number of CDs are available offering a sampling of these resources. To request a complimentary sourcebook sampler CD, e-mail address information to Elaine Enarson at eenarson@earthlink.net. Copies are also available at cost through PERI at http://www.riskinstitute.org/.

The sourcebook in its entirety will be available online by April 1, 2006, through the Gender and Disaster Network Web site at http://www.gdnonline.org/sourcebook/. Readers are invited to submit additional resources from their region and sector as they become available.

7) Reminder: Hazards and Disasters Student Paper Competition Deadline

The deadline to submit papers to the Natural Hazards Center’s Annual Hazards and Disasters Student Paper Competition is April 7, 2006. The competition is for undergraduate and graduate students. Submissions may be theoretical arguments, case studies, literature reviews, or descriptions of research results on topics relevant to the social/behavioral aspects of hazards and disasters, natural, technological, or otherwise. Topics may include, but are not limited to, Hurricane Katrina, the South Asia earthquake, climate change, warning systems, natural hazards mitigation, land use, women and children in disasters, disaster myths, or the transport of hazardous materials.

Papers will be judged on their originality, organization, and demonstrated knowledge of the topic. One undergraduate and one graduate winner will each receive $100; a mention in the Natural Hazards Observer; publication on the Natural Hazards Center Web site; an invitation to the Annual Hazards Workshop in Boulder, Colorado, registration fees included; and the opportunity to present their work at the workshop’s poster session.

Additional information, including eligibility criteria and submission guidelines, is available at http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/SPC/. Questions should be directed to Christine Bevc at christine.bevc@colorado.edu.

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/.]

PERI Presidential Disaster Declaration Web Site
This Web site created by the University of Delaware with funding from the Public Entity Risk Institute (PERI) is a free online resource that provides information about presidential disaster declarations to help communities better understand their exposure to various types of natural and human-caused disasters. The site allows users to search and access information about presidential declarations in any state, county, or territory within the United States and to focus on specific time periods or types of disaster declarations.

Pew Center on Global Climate Change “Agenda for Climate Action” Report
This report is the culmination of a two-year effort by the Pew Center on Global Climate Change to articulate a pragmatic course of action across all areas of the economy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. It identifies broad and specific policies that combine recommendations on economy-wide mandatory emissions cuts, technology development, scientific research, energy supply, and adaptation with critical steps to be taken in key sectors.

Linking Climate Adaptation Network
The goal of the Linking Climate Adaptation Network is to provide an accessible, useful, and vibrant forum for exchanges of research, policy, and experiences related to climate adaptation. This Web site includes a climate adaptation topic guide, news and events, and moderated online discussions.

CRS Report on State and Urban Area Homeland Security Plans/Exercises
This Congressional Research Service (CRS) report, State and Urban Area Homeland Security Plans and Exercises: Issues for the 109th Congress, addresses possible policy questions associated with homeland security plans and exercises, including how states and urban areas use federal funding to prepare for terrorist attacks and natural disasters.

CRS Report Forest Fire/Wildfire Protection
This Congressional Research Service (CRS) report discusses the factors contributing to wildfire risk, methods for fuel treatment, fire control funding and policies, and the roles and responsibilities of homeowners and local, state, and federal governments in reducing wildfire risk.

Tsunami Evaluation Coalition: Initial Findings
The initial report from the Tsunami Evaluation Coalition, a collaborative effort by aid agencies to improve humanitarian systems by learning from the response to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, can be found here.

Survivors of the Tsunami: One Year Later
This report provides a snapshot of the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) assistance to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami recovery and reconstruction efforts during the past year and provides examples of how the UNDP is helping survivors of the tsunami rebuild their lives.

Seaside, Oregon, Tsunami Education and Information Page
The City of Seaside, Oregon, has developed this tsunami education and information Web page. The goal of the page is to educate community members about the city’s tsunami preparedness activities and to provide educational information, community and business resources, and other useful tools.

MedlinePlus Natural Disasters Pages
The Web site, MedlinePlus, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health, provides Web pages with resources on the health topics of Natural Disasters, Coping with Disasters, and Disaster Preparation and Recovery.

Public Health Response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report has highlighted the public health response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita with two special issues. The first issue focused on public health activities in Louisiana. This second issue focuses on activities in other states directly or indirectly affected by the two hurricanes.

CDC Web Cast: Learning from Katrina
Public Health Grand Rounds, a partnership project sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in collaboration with the University of North Carolina School of Public Health, will broadcast by satellite and the Web a program focused on the public health implications and vulnerabilities of disaster preparedness. “Learning from Katrina: Tough Lessons in Preparedness and Emergency Response” will air on March 31, 2006, at 2:00 pm eastern standard time.

Supplemental Documents to House “Failure of Initiative” Report
The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Government Reform has made supplemental documents available related to their investigation for A Failure of Initiative: The Final Report of the Select Bipartisan Committee to Investigate the Preparation for and Response to Hurricane Katrina. The documents include e-mails and other communications between state and federal officials and staff.

Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System
The Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System is a Web-based platform that combines existing Web-based disaster information management systems with the aim to alert the international community in the case of major sudden onset disasters and to facilitate the coordination of international response during the relief phase of the disaster. It is a joint initiative of the United Nations and the European Commission.

9) Conferences and Trainings

[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.]

Gulf Coast Reconstruction Summit. Washington, DC: April 11-12, 2006. Organizer: Equity International. This event will be held in conjunction with the 2006 Homeland and Global Security Summit and will address the concerns and issues associated with rebuilding the Gulf Coast region. Participants must RSVP by April 1, 2006. For registration information, contact Monica Slovik, Equity International, e-mail: mslovik@equityintl.us; http://www.katrinareconstruction.org/summit.asp.

2006 AIR Spring Conference. San Francisco, California: April 18-21, 2006. Host: AIR Worldwide Corporation. This conference will take an in-depth look at what can be learned from the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire. AIR seismologists and earthquake engineers will examine the most recent advances in earthquake hazard assessment and engineering and review updates to AIR catastrophe models, including U.S. hurricane, European extratropical cyclone, Latin American earthquake, and U.S. terrorism models. Other timely topics will include climatological influences on tropical and extratropical cyclone activity, best practices for interpreting model results, and how companies can use catastrophe modeling to move toward a more optimal portfolio. For additional information, contact Jenni Zibrat, AIR; (617) 267-6645; air2006spring@air-worldwide.com; http://www.air-worldwide.com/_public/html/sanfranconf.asp.

IEG Conference on the Effectiveness of Assistance for Natural Disasters. Washington, DC: April 21, 2006, 1:30-5:30 pm. Organizer: Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank. The objective of this conference is to provide a forum for government officials, delegation members, civil society, and World Bank staff to share views on how to improve the effectiveness of donor support for natural disaster response and prevention in light of recent findings from IEG evaluations. For further information, contact ieg_conference@worldbank.org;

Workshop on the Principles of Disaster Management. Sponsors: University of Toronto and York University. Toronto, Canada: June 2, 2006. The purpose of this workshop is to explore the rationale for discrepancies in the principles of disaster management between various organizations. Participants will investigate a conceptual framework for understanding these principles and, through a facilitated exercise, will develop a set of consistent, comprehensive, and effective disaster management principles. For further information, contact the Natural City Conference Office, 33 Willcocks Street, Room 1016V, Earth Sciences Centre, Centre for Environment, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5S 3E8; (416) 978-8630; e-mail: natural.city@utoronto.ca; http://www.environment.utoronto.ca/NaturalCity/Workshops/DisasterManagement.

9th Annual By-Invitation Emergency Management and Homeland Security/Defense Higher Education Conference. Emmitsburg, Maryland: June 6-8, 2006. Host: Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Emergency Management Institute. This conference provides a forum for academics to discuss problems and issues surrounding hazards, disaster, emergency management, and homeland security/defense educational programs. It is designed for representatives of colleges and universities that have such programs in place or are attempting to develop and implement them. This year’s conference theme is “Catastrophe Readiness and Response.” Two preconference workshops will be held June 5: How to Design, Develop, and Teach a College Course on Catastrophe Readiness and Response and GIS in Emergency Management and Homeland Security. For further information, contact Wayne Blanchard, FEMA; (301) 447-1262; e-mail: wayne.blanchard@dhs.gov or Barbara Johnson, FEMA; (301) 447-1452; e-mail: Barbara.L.Johnson@dhs.gov; http://training.fema.gov/emiweb/edu/educonference06.asp.

Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) Annual Conference and Exposition. Orlando, Florida: August 6-10, 2006. Decision makers in all areas of public safety communications are invited to attend this comprehensive forum of educational programs, professional speakers, and vendor displays. The event will feature the most current presentations on homeland security and public safety communications technology, including development tracks on management and planning, interoperability, legislative and regulatory issues, and others. For further information, contact APCO, 351 North Williamson Boulevard, Daytona Beach, FL 32114; e-mail: apco@apcointl.org; http://www.apco2006.org/.

2006 Operations Management Conference: Operating Reservoirs in Changing Conditions. Sacramento, California: August 14-16, 2006. Sponsor: Environmental and Water Resources Institute (EWRI) of the American Society of Civil Engineers. This conference will provide an opportunity for operations and management personnel of water resources projects to exchange ideas and share discussions on current issues, applications of new technology, and the day-to-day challenges of operating and maintaining a water resources project. It will include plenary and technical sessions, trade exhibits, and networking events. For more information, contact Katie Gorscak, EWRI; (703) 295-6078; e-mail: kgorscak@asce.org; http://www.asce.org/conferences/om06/.

8th Annual Technologies for Critical Incident Preparedness Conference and Exposition. Atlanta, Georgia: September 6-8, 2006. Sponsors: U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate, U.S. Department of Justice National Institute of Justice, and U.S. Department of Defense Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense. This conference will highlight the technologies and tools currently available and being developed for the emergency responder community. It will offer opportunities for emergency responders, business and industry representatives, academics, and elected federal, state, and local stakeholders to network, exchange ideas, and address common critical incident technology and preparedness needs and solutions. For more information, contact Lisa Hecker; e-mail: lhecker@ctc.org; http://www.regonline.com/eventinfo.asp?EventId=88623.

National Association of Flood and Stormwater Management Agencies (NAFSMA) 2006 Annual Meeting and Workshop. San Antonio, Texas: September 6-8, 2006. Participants in this meeting will include local, state, and federal flood and stormwater management officials from throughout the United States. The meeting will provide opportunities to share information with colleagues and to discuss critical issues. For additional information, contact NAFSMA, 1301 K Street NW, Eighth Floor East Tower, Washington, DC 20005; (202) 478-1734; http://www.nafsma.org/Meetings/meetings_upcoming.htm.

International City/County Management Association (ICMA) 92nd Annual Conference. San Antonio, Texas: September 10-13, 2006. The educational program of this conference is organized into six tracks, including one on Emergency and Disaster Management, under the theme of “Sustaining Our Communities in an Uncertain World.” Public and private sector experts will share knowledge and address new and recurring challenges facing local government managers. For more information, contact ICMA, 777 North Capitol Street, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20002; (202) 289-4262; e-mail: ICMAConference@icma.org; http://www.icma.org/.

Fifth National Seismic Conference on Bridges and Highways. San Francisco, California: September 18-20, 2006. Sponsor: Federal Highway Administration. The theme of this conference is “Innovations in Earthquake Engineering for Highway Structures.” Its purpose is to increase awareness of seismic and geological hazards and to enhance the technical expertise of engineering professionals to mitigate the risk of failure or damage to bridges and highways. The conference will be tailored to the needs of engineers, design consultants, researchers, and others responsible for transportation facilities who are interested in learning about advances in earthquake-resistant design and retrofitting, highway system performance, and the latest in research results. For additional information, contact Jerome O’Connor, Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research; (716) 645-3391 x107; e-mail: jso7@buffalo.edu; http://mceer.buffalo.edu/meetings/5nsc/.

Managing Drought and Water Scarcity in Vulnerable Environments: Creating a Roadmap for Change in the United States. Boulder, Colorado: September 18-20, 2006. Organizer: Geological Society of America. The goals of this meeting are to create an integrated, interactive, future-oriented forum for understanding and improving the management of drought and water scarcity in the United States and to stimulate national debate through the publication and wide distribution of a science- and policy-based discussion document. The focus of the meeting will be on identifying successful strategies for drought and water scarcity management and on developing a decisive action plan. For more information, contact Deborah Nelson, Geological Society of America; (303) 357-1014, e-mail: dnelson@geosociety.org; http://www.geosociety.org/meetings/06drought/.

10) Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

Postdisaster Livelihoods Recovery - Several Positions
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies is seeking qualified candidates to undertake short- or long-term post- natural disaster recovery program planning, implementation, and monitoring assignments. The successful candidates will become part of a recovery expertise pool and may be called upon following a disaster to carry out recovery needs assessments and/or coordinate the design and delivery of recovery programs as part of a field-based disaster response operation. There are currently 6- to 12-month assignments available in the Asia Pacific region.

The recovery positions require strong strategic planning, analytic, communication, and teamwork skills, as well as substantial experience in aid delivery, preferably in a postdisaster context. Successful candidates will also be committed to the values and principles of the Red Cross/Red Crescent movement.

The closing date for applications is March 25, 2006. For a complete job description and to apply, visit https://jobnet.ifrc.org/public/.

Climate Change Adaptation Regional Technical Advisor
United Nations Development Programme: Various locations

The Global Environment Facility of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) seeks highly qualified individuals to develop and implement projects in climate change adaptation with a focus on capacity development for the following three positions:

  1. Regional technical advisor for West and Central Africa based in Dakar, Senegal
  2. Regional technical advisor for Asia and the Pacific based in Bangkok, Thailand
  3. Regional technical advisor for Latin America and the Caribbean based in Panama City, Panama

Position responsibilities include strategic programming for the UNDP portfolio of adaptation and capacity development projects in the region; helping countries in the region to identify, develop, and implement adaptation projects; providing technical support to the UNDP country offices in the region; and developing strategic partnerships with public and private sector institutions, including donors and nongovernmental organizations.

Qualifications for the positions are a postgraduate university degree in climate change science, climate risk mitigation and/or climate risk reduction, vulnerability and adaptation, development economics, or a closely related environmental field; 10 years experience in project development, preferably in the field and on adaptation projects; experience in the policy development process associated with the environment and sustainable development; demonstrated ability and experience to take initiative and work in an independent manner; experience working in the specific region; fluency in the main regional language; and full computer literacy.

To apply, send a curriculum vitae and three professional references by March 30, 2006, to marianna.gindin@undp.org. View the job posting at http://www.linkingclimateadaptation.org/webx?14@178.hK66aG1BkHg.0@.eecb01e!discloc=.eece608.


Questions for the readership and contributions to this e-newsletter are encouraged. Questions and messages should be indicated as such and sent to hazctr@colorado.edu.

Back to Top