Tuesday, December 13, 2022 | 11:00 a.m. to Noon MST

Policy Research from the Mitigation Matters Award Program

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Webinar Description:

The Natural Hazards Center has partnered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to create the Mitigation Matters Research Award Program which provides funding to researchers to conduct studies on hazard mitigation programs, policies, and implementation practices. The first call for proposals was launched in Fall 2019, with the second call issued in Spring 2020. To date, 19 research teams have been funded by this program.

We hope you will join us for this webinar that will highlight research from three of our funded teams. Presentations will examine the adoption of FEMA’s property buyout program in Virginia; small business recovery programs after Hurricanes Sandy, Matthew, and Harvey; and wildfire mitigation in California. This work is relevant to federal, state, and local government, nonprofits that work with homeowners and small businesses after disasters, land use planners, floodplain managers, wildfire professionals, and many others.

You can access already published Mitigation Matters Reports and Research Briefs on the Natural Hazards Center website.


Qiong Wang, Virginia Tech
What Drives Hazard Mitigation Policy Adoption?: FEMA’s Property Buyout Program in Virginia Counties

Sherri Brokopp Binder, BrokoppBinder Research & Consulting and Ronald Schumann, University of North Texas
From the Ashes: Mitigation Policy After Wildfire in California

Divya Chandrasekhar, University of Utah
Does Post-Disaster Recovery Funding Promote Mitigation in Small Businesses?

Natural Hazards Center Overview Slides

Qiong Wang

Qiong Wang is a PhD candidate in planning, governance and globalization at the Virginia Tech School of Public and International Affairs. Wang's research focuses on disaster resilience, environmental planning and climate policy, and environmental justice with an emphasis on understanding local decision-making dynamics, supporting local adaptation planning and implementation, and policy innovation in the United States. Currently, she is a fellow of the Virginia Sea Grant and a scholar of the interdisciplinary Disaster Resilience and Risk Management program, and with these positions closing in May 2023, she is looking to further her postdoctoral career in the academic space.

Sherri Brokopp Binder

Sherri Brokopp Binder’s is president of BrokoppBinder Research & Consulting, a research and evaluation consulting firm located in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Trained as a community psychologist, Binder’s work spans the academic, non-profit, and private sectors. Her research focuses on housing recovery and postdisaster relocation, with an emphasis on home buyout programs. Her work includes mixed-method studies of community and governmental response and recovery following recent California wildfires, Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Sandy, the 2013 Moore, OK tornadoes, and the 2009 South Pacific tsunami. She received her bachelor's in International Affairs from Kennesaw State University, her master's in Sustainable International Development from Brandeis University, her PhD in Community and Cultural Psychology from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, and a graduate certificate in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance from the National Disaster Preparedness Training Center at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.

Ronald Schumann

Ronald Schumann is an associate professor in the Department of Emergency Management and Disaster Science at the University of North Texas. A human geographer by training, Schumann’s research focuses on long-term community recovery and post-disaster mitigation. His research utilizes participatory, geospatial, and mixed methods to explore issues of social vulnerability, cultural memory, equity, and risk perception. Schumann has previously conducted fieldwork documenting recovery efforts after Hurricanes Katrina, Sandy, and Harvey. He is currently collaborating on a study funded by the National Science Foundation that uses photovoice to understand how place attachment affected housing recovery after the recent California wildfires.

Divya Chandrasekhar

Divya Chandrasekhar is an associate professor in the Department of City and Metropolitan Planning at the University of Utah, with expertise in community recovery from disasters. Her research has examined post-disaster community participation, capacity building, and policymaking in South and Southeast Asia, the Caribbean, and the United States. She is a member of the Utah Seismic Safety Commission and a member of the Roundtable on Risk and Resilience of Extreme Events (Resilient America) of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine. She holds master’s and PhD degrees in urban and regional planning from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.