Tuesday, April 24, 2018

SWOT analysis in DRR

A SWOT analysis (alternatively SWOT matrix) is a structured planning method used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of an organisation. SWOT analysis involves the collection and portrayal of information about internal and external factors that have, or may have, an impact on the organization. The degree to which the internal environment of the organisation matches with the external environment is expressed by the concept of strategic fit.
Setting the objective should be done after the SWOT analysis has been performed. This would allow achievable goals or objectives to be set for the organization.
Identification of SWOTs is important because they can inform later steps in planning to achieve the objective.
First, the decision makers should consider whether the objective is attainable, given the SWOTs. If the objective is not attainable a different objective must be selected and the process repeated.
A disaster is an external phenomena when it is natural. But when it is man-made, it becomes internal. Main stakeholder of those situation is the community and the Government. A community and the Government is functioning in an external environment. There internal environment is always in reaction with their external environment. Again for a community, Government acts as an external environment and for Government, community creates its internal environment. 
A SWOT analysis lets us gain a better understanding of our community’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Inversely, it also shows the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of a Government. If internal environment is weakness for a Government, and Government identifies it as risk, it can make suitable plan for capacity building. Similarly, if the policy of the Government poses threat and community identifies it as risk to them, they can take suitable measurement to change the policy that helps their risk to reduce. SWOT analysis thus create opportunities to overcome risk.
   We can describe how a SWOT analysis can help our emergency planning team understand our organization's vulnerabilities as follows. 
•What assets do we currently have in terms of emergency readiness? Do our team members have requisite trainings? Do you already have good relationships with your local emergency responders?
•What resources are available for our organization? Do any of our members have family members who could provide emergency training? Do you have a back-up power source?
• What steps have I already taken to increase my readiness for emergencies? Think about the condition of our facility, training programs available in our community, etc.
•What could we improve, in terms of emergency preparedness? Do all of our members know where the emergency exits are? 
•In what areas is our organization’s emergency preparedness particularly deficient? For example, do you need to develop a relationship with your local police station? Does our community’s insurance cover all the types of emergencies we might face? Is the coverage adequate for these emergencies?
•What opportunities exist that we can take advantage of? Is there a local QRT (Quick Response Team) program that our organization can team up with? 
•What local events could provide opportunities for raising community’s awareness of emergency preparedness? Does our community have street fairs or seasonal festivals?
•What obstacles does our community face in terms of planning? Some obstacles could be lack of money or time, low enthusiasm from other members, etc.
• What are the specific hazards and threats that our community faces? Such threats could be natural, such as cyclones or tornadoes, as well as man-made, such as terrorism and crime. Is my community particularly susceptible to any of these? Our plan needs to address all potential hazards and threats.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Climate Migration at Micro Level in a Huge Economy

Migration is a secured contribution to livelihood for generations across the world. It is also accepted historically as a process of diffusion of human race, culture and civilisation. Ancient people took this adaptive route when, among other causes, exposed to extreme weather events, ecosystem failed to serve them, agricultural potential has been reduced; livelihood resources became difficult to obtain. Basically migrated people are poor and more vulnerable.  
                          But Climate Refugees are not institutionally recognized as ‘Refugee’ in present political context, especially in case of short term displacement due to climate induced disasters. While cross border migration due to any disaster may able to draw a notice to the international community and thus to the receiving Nation-State, the displacement of intra-district or even intra-state due to same type of havoc goes unnoticed. The negative economic impact of intra-state displacement in a huge nation-state like India is absorbed by its macroeconomic activities.  The only effect is at micro level, at rural community level. When a community as a whole is not migrated, only the active member of families left the native place to secure the livelihood, often their efforts fail to get any significant earnings for their families and the left out members have to earn locally to maintain the family.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

DRR and Education

Which path will our economic policy take - Growth or Social Development? We are intensely involved in the discussion. Ever we thought if this had any relation to the impact of disasters or climate change? There is a lot of discussion on the amount of black money that is running our economy. How is the black money created? Is it not the reflection of our economic growth? But my question is? Does this money trickle down to micro level economic activities to reduce the vulnerabilities of people? The question is whether our educational system can pose such question in the minds of a student’s?
Recently, I have seen a problem related to rotational motion, due to Global Warming. Ice on polar caps is likely to melt in larger quantity. Due to this effect angular velocity of earth decrease/increase etc. The students engaged in solving this question to secure the credit in their examination are not seeing it as a problem related to climate change.
Earth system comprises of interacting sub-systems of water, rock, ice, air, and life. Our development is also linked with this interacting sub-system through value addition to this. Human activities affect this earth system. Improper understanding and management of this sub-system cause climate change and other types of disasters.
Today, more than ever before, young generations are faced with increasing and chronic degradation of natural resources, greater prevalence and severity of natural disasters, and the growing necessity for forced migration. It requires better understanding and appreciation of the earth system for better management of development with a goal to reach sustainable development, i.e., development for future. The generations to come must manifest their appreciation through their responsible behaviour and management of a system. A political will should grow in their mind for addressing DRR and CCA. A properly designed education policy may guide and motivate the generations to come to think in this line.
The main purpose of a National Policy on Education should be for sustainable development, which should provide a tool which will support our country in strengthening student’s knowledge, skills, attitudes and ability to adapt to the changing physical environment. While providing a mechanism to promote and support the use of facilities-based environmental solutions, the policy should be a pathway to quality education which is intended to support the challenges and opportunities posed by climate change and disasters. It should be a tool for skills and empowerment which is to be designed to fill a perceptual gap between a student’s physical environment and their daily life. The life skills learned through education should help them to address sustainable development.
The policy should take a skills-based approach to empower learning and to be designed to support the equitable involvement and engagement of students of both genders. It should aim to increase student’s understanding of the interdependent relationship between the environment and their life, community, and country. The curricula should be designed to address community-level vulnerabilities to chronic and sudden impacts of climate change, disasters and environmental degradation.
In preparing the curricula it should be taken care that 'DRR and CCA' can’t be treated as a separate subject to add another burden on students. But it should be integrated with the subjects like science, economics, geography, geology, history and even in literature. This can be made through sensitisation of policymakers, resource persons, teachers, and administrators etc. who are at the helm of affairs related to imparting education.

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Child-led DRR

We know that DRR efforts cannot properly account for childrens needs unless specific attention is paid to this during the design and implementation of any intervention. Such DRR can be said to be child-centred or child-focused. We also know that engaging children directly in the design and delivery of DRR activities can have many benefits.
This aspect of child-focused DRR seeks to move beyond simply transferring knowledge. Promoting childrens voice is about improving the visibility of childrens needs, increasing their analytical abilities, and stimulating recognition of their potential as agents of change. As children become more visible and respected in their communities, this can help reduce their longer-term vulnerability to climate change and disasters and indeed in other respects.

Child-led and child-focused DRR cannot solve everything. However, given the considerable benefits that appear to derive from it, both social and economic, it deserves a greater share of effort and expenditure. The balance of that effort should now shift, emphasising influential and transformative action to secure the future of todays children.

Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Climate Adaptation

Climate change, development and disaster are correlated to each other. Climate change can cause disaster and disaster can also have the potential to change the climate. Likewise developments for the last 100 years are directly affecting the climate. In fact, industrial development is supposed to be the main cause of climate change. Alternatively, climate change can also hamper development; this is true also that disaster hamper development and some developments also trigger disasters.
So, there is a clear correlation amongst disasters, development and climate change. Here we mean development as social development mainly which is hampered by disaster and climate change, whereas structural development causes climate change or disasters. Since long we have spent on structural development, building capacity of people in this field completely but ignoring disaster risk reduction factors in designing these structures.
In climate change adaptation we want to involve the community and want to sensitize them regarding the effect of climate change on their livelihood. In Himalayan region people depends on nature basically for their livelihood. Marginalized people choose their living places in most vulnerable areas. They excavate mines, quarries in unstable slopes of Himalayas. Flow of water in rivers that is fed by glaciers are reducing, thus ultimately reducing the scope of agriculture which is the main livelihood support of rural India.
So, when we try to introduce community based climate change adaptability vis-a-vis Disaster Risk Reduction to marginalized people, the first question will be the question of livelihood, i.e., what will happen to their livelihood. Risk perception for these people is not same as we perceive them. Their livelihood is at risk, so they do not bother if they are creating any risk to the environment or not in the process of earning their livelihood.
Thus, when we plan a project on climate change adaptation and want to involve community in the project, that means if we want to plan for a community based climate change adaptation (CBCCA) or community based disaster risk reduction (CBDRR), we plan first for an alternative livelihood programme for the local people. Poveety reduction, DRR and CCA should be linked with each other. Secondly, development planners and structural designers should be sensitized to the effect that the future development programmes needs to take care of disaster related risks. Thirdly, specialists of climate change, disaster risk reduction and development should sit together and jointly plan to save Himalayan region. Traditional local knowledge and scientific knowledge needs to evolve a common platform so that the community gets the benefit of both scientific and traditional knowledge.

SWOT analysis in DRR

A SWOT analysis (alternatively SWOT matrix) is a structured planning method used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and ...