'Preventing disasters: understanding social and structural vulnerability'

Course Location Bloomsbury, London
Cost £0
Type of course in situ
Course provider University College London
Available dates for this course

Please contact University College London directly for a current list of course dates

A 1-day course running in March 2009

Disasters are no longer perceived as inevitable, with humanitarian action being the primary means to mitigate their impact. Instead it is recognised that the process of development itself has a significant impact on disaster risk. Therefore there is an urgent and accepted need to mainstream Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in the development process at every level (national, regional and local) focussed on prevention and mitigation, as well as preparedness and response [1].

Course aims:

This course looks at preventative assessments that can be used to make decisions which affect mitigation strategies.

It aims to:

highlight social and engineering issues that affect the vulnerability to natural hazards;

teach the basic concepts for assessing the social and structural vulnerability of urban regions to produce loss estimates useful for determining mitigation policies.


The course is aimed at:

anyone with an interest in understanding disaster management concepts and its interaction with engineering, in particular:

civil engineers with minimal experience of disaster management or earthquake engineering, who wish to increase their understanding of these fields as part of their job requirements or future career plans;

recent graduates who are considering careers or further study in these areas;

individuals with non-engineering backgrounds from organisations that have a strategic role in the intervention of disasters, who may wish to gain an understanding of disaster management and rudimentary engineering concepts.


Course content:

This course uses both disaster management and engineering concepts to cover the principals laid out in the ProVention Guidelines (notes 9 and 12) [2]. A range of teaching methods will be used including lectures, interactive exercises and desk-based case studies.

The following will be covered:

the socio-economic vulnerability to disaster;

the impact of disasters on society;

basic concepts of earthquake resistance of buildings;

estimating building damage in different earthquake scenarios.

[1] Infrastructure and Disaster Risk Reduction: J da Silva: DFID (2007)

[2] Tools for mainstreaming disaster risk reduction: C Benson, J Twigg and T Rossetto: ProVention (2007)

For more information please contact:

Ms. Bhupinder Sehra
Email: b.sehra@ucl.ac.uk
Phone: +44(0)20 7679 4428
Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering Chadwick Building Gower St
London
WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom
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Telephone: 0207 679 7831