Disaster Risk Reduction


About disaster risk reduction

Disasters put hard won development achievements at risk, reversing economic growth and progress towards the elimination of poverty; cause environmental damage; and result in human suffering. Investing in disaster preparedness before a natural hazard occurs reduces the need for humanitarian action. Every dollar spent on preparing for disasters saves around seven dollars in economic losses.

Our Goals

UNDP helps develop the capacity of governments in over 60 countries to respond to disasters and mitigate the risk they pose. UNDP is guiding policy; training communities and first responders; helping planners; and integrating disaster risk reduction strategies into national development plans.

Disaster recovery activities are often an opportunity to integrate improved disaster resilience into communities and build back better. Emergency employment schemes to rebuild a bridge are an opportunity to build something that will resist future earthquakes or floods; debris that is removed can be used to strengthen embankments to prevent landslides or flooding.UNDP spends an average of over US$ 150 million annually to increase resilience to natural hazards.

Our stories

  • Bamboo keeps villagers dry in NepalJun 6, 2014Bamboo keeps villagers dry in NepalA UNDP-supported scheme is helping the government mitigate floods and landslides, which account for over three quarters of economic loss caused by disasters in the country.

  • Managing droughts and floods in Azerbaijan Nov 26, 2014Managing droughts and floods in AzerbaijanReducing the vulnerability of mountain communities in Azerbaijan requires improved management of water resources and adaptation to the impacts of climate change.

  • Stronger roots: Growing resilient forests in Samoa Sep 19, 2014Stronger roots: Growing resilient forests in SamoaA 4-year project is working to increase the resilience of Samoa’s forests to climate change, and of the communities that depend on them.

  • Quake awareness in Uzbekistan given a shakeupAug 12, 2013Quake awareness in Uzbekistan given a shakeupIn Uzbekistan, a country prone to catastrophic seismic events, a UNDP project is raising awareness about the risk to ordinary people while strengthening emergency response capacity.

  • Following up on cyclone recovery in BangladeshFeb 20, 2015Following up on cyclone recovery in Bangladesh

Projects and Initiatives

  • Getting Airports Ready for DisasterGetting Airports Ready for DisasterA joint project of UNDP and Deutsche Post-DHL is helping airports get ready for potential disaster scenarios that can slow relief efforts.

  • Rebuilding HaitiRebuilding HaitiSince the devastating earthquake of 12 January 2010, enormous efforts have been made to help the government achieve its objectives and to improve Haitians’ living conditions.

  • CyclonePam ResponseCyclonePam Response

Thematic Briefs