Climate and disaster risk governance

  A school disaster management committee in southeast Sri Lanka goes over the school safety plan it developed as part of the "Strengthening Disaster Management Capacities" project. Photo: UNDP/Sri Lanka

UNDP recognizes governance as a key unresolved issue in both the configuration and the reduction of disaster and climate risks. With the aim of protecting development investments and ultimately building people’s resilience, UNDP has made strengthening disaster and climate risk governance a cornerstone of its efforts to understand, reduce and manage risk.

Risk governance describes the way a society manages various and often inter-connected types of risks, including those from natural hazards, climate change, environmental degradation, financial crises and conflict. Such management includes measures to ensure that development is risk-informed by integrating disaster risk reduction and adaptation measures into sectorial planning, infrastructure, livelihoods, and broader economic and social development strategies. By ‘mainstreaming’ disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation into the everyday business of governance we can ensure that development is both better protected from the impacts of disasters as well as ensure that development does not exacerbate existing natural hazard risks. ‘All-of-government’, ‘all-of-society’ and ‘multi-disciplinary’ approaches are all central to achieving a more inclusive approach to disaster and climate risk management—one that enhances the capacity of local level actors to achieve and sustain more equitable and resilient development outcomes.

Since 2005, UNDP has worked with national governments, communities and development partners to support disaster risk governance in 125 countries. A significant portion of this work focuses on strengthening institutional systems and legal and policy mechanisms to govern the reduction and management of disaster risk, as well as providing support for the decision-making processes at national and sub-national levels that ensure transparency, accountability, participation and equity in policy setting and implementation.

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