Climate change and local level disaster risk reduction planning: need, opportunities and challenges

  • S. V. R. K. PrabhakarEmail author
  • Ancha Srinivasan
  • Rajib Shaw


The field of climate change is full of uncertainties that are limiting strategic disaster risk reduction planning. In this paper, however, we argued that there is lot to do before we get our hands on reliable estimates of future climate change impacts. It includes bringing together different stakeholders in a framework suggested in this paper, developing case studies that reflect long-term local impacts of climate change, capacity building of local stakeholders that enables them to take decisions under uncertainty etc. We proposed a simple scheme that brings together climate, disaster and policy community together to start a dialogue in a run-up to understanding wider aspects of long-term risk reduction at local level. Strategic thinking, which has only been restricted to national and regional planning to date, needs to be inculcated in local level disaster risk reduction and policy personnel as well. There is a need to move from the attitude of considering local level players as ‘implementers’ to ‘innovators’ for which developing a network of self learning and evolving organizations are required at the local level.


Local disaster risk reduction planning Climate change Strategic planning Uncertainty Climate task group 



American Water Works Association


Center for Research on Epidemiology of Disasters


Climate task group


Greenhouse Gases


Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change


United Kingdom Climate Impacts Program


United Nations Development Program Adaptation Policy Framework



The work published in this paper was supported by the Japanese Society for Promotion of Science (JSPS) through Postdoctoral Fellowship and research grant to the primary author at Kyoto University. We acknowledge the stimulating discussions with Prof Ian Davis, Affiliate Professor, Oxford Books University that helped us enrich the preliminary draft. We also acknowledge learning experience of working with diverse stakeholders including Oxfam-Vietnam, IFRC Regional Delegation in South Asia, and local governments in Japan and India that helped us in enriching our understanding in this subject.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. V. R. K. Prabhakar
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Ancha Srinivasan
    • 2
  • Rajib Shaw
    • 1
  1. 1.Graduate School of Global Environmental StudiesKyoto UniversityKyotoJapan
  2. 2.Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)HayamaJapan

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