Preparedness and Response to Humanitarian Crises

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Disaster preparedness and response involve forecasting and taking precautionary measures prior to an imminent threat when advance warnings are possible. Preparedness planning improves the response to the effects of a disaster by organising the delivery of timely and effective rescue, relief and assistance. Preparedness involves the development and regular testing of warning systems (linked to forecasting systems) and plans for evacuation or other measures to be taken during a disaster alert period to minimise potential loss of life and physical damage. It also involves the education and training of officials and the population at risk, the training of intervention teams, and the establishment of policies, standards, organisational arrangements and operational plans to be applied following a disaster. Effective plans also consider securing resources, possibly including stockpiling supplies and earmarking funds.

This course is designed to introduce two aspect of disaster management – Preparedness and Response – and to increase students’ awareness of the nature and management of disasters, leading to better performance. The content has been written to cover principles, procedures, methods and terminology. However, terminology in this field is not standardised and different institutions may use the same terms in slightly different ways. This will also be covered as one of the problematic issues in this field.

The course includes a wide range of topics within Disaster Preparedness and Response such as: Conflicts and complex emergencies; International security; Management of disaster situations; Needs assessment and monitoring; Legal framework for refugees and IDPs; Information management and GIS; Communications in emergencies; Financing and donors; Personal safety in the field. These four weeks of Disaster Preparedness and Response also include a thorough introduction to the cluster-approach with extensive coverage of the most essential clusters (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene; Health; Emergency Shelter; Logistics; Food/Nutrition; Protection; Camp Coordination and Management; Education) as well as many international actors working within response (e.g. Save the Children, UNICEF, WHO, UNOSAT, UNOPS, UN-OCHA).

Deadline for applications: 1 September 2021. Start your online application now!

This core course is part of the full Master of Disaster Management programme.