Disaster resilience and mitigation. Short report on current and future capacity to deliver on risk assessment and mitigation needs

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O'Connell, Deborah; Lin, Brenda ORCID ID icon; Capon, Tim; Stafford Smith, Mark



28 p

The Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department (AGD) commissioned CSIRO to identify capability gaps in meeting the broad aims of risk assessment and mitigation for natural disasters, for the Australian and New Zealand Emergency Management Committee (ANZ EMC), the Risk Assessment Measurement and Mitigation Subcommittee (RAMMS) and other collaborating Subcommittees of the ANZ EMC. We conducted workshops and detailed interviews with key stakeholders and research providers, workshops, supplemented by various policy documents such as the National Strategy for Disaster Resilience, the Productivity Commission report on Natural Disaster Funding Arrangements and literature to frame our analysis. These sources of information were used to frame 3 different analyses: 1. A partial stakeholder systems analysis, identifying key stakeholders, main roles and decisions, influence pathways, constraints and enablers, and processes/tools and data needs. 2. A ‘map of needs’ or ‘theory of change’ with future activities, outputs and outcomes to move towards a long-term goal of disaster mitigation. 3. Mapping of current and future processes and tools to 10 stage generic risk management process (based on ISO 31000 and the National Emergency Risk Assessment Guidelines (NERAG)), and 6 stage Mitigation Value Chain (a construct of the RAMMS, comprising a series of 6 questions to help frame their approach to risk mitigation). Key findings from stakeholder system analysis (See Figure 2) - Interviewees expressed a wide range of needs and influence pathways - a mix of formal rules (policy, legislation, funding arrangements), and other ‘soft’ influences (incentives, information, awareness, co-operation etc.). - Most interviewees expressed the need for a change in most in parts of the system, but particularly in those parts which adjoined those closest to their own areas of operation or influence. - This reinforced the view put forward in the Productivity Commission report - that the whole system needs consideration, and perfecting interventions in one part only is unlikely to be successful. - There were perceived barriers to action occurring throughout the system, and they are often interdependent. - Therefore there is a need to seek critical leverage points throughout the stakeholder system and work to enhance them simultaneously. Key findings from the ‘map of needs’ (or ‘theory of change’) (See Figure 3) - The interviews provided long list of expressed needs, disparate in nature, and scattered on maturity spectrum for effective disaster risk mitigation. Therefore, we used information from the interviews, policy documents and technical reports, and the literature to distil a long-term goal, and a set of Activities, Outputs, and Outcomes. - The nine gaps identified in the risk assessment process were used to specify nine activities to address the gaps. The expressed needs from the interviews were logically mapped into the discrete, unique but interlinked units of Activities or Outputs to create a sound basis to prioritise activities that build capability, develop processes, tools and data and synthesise knowledge in a critical pathway to reaching the long-term goal Key findings from the stocktake and gap analysis of tools, processes and data with respect to the Mitigation Value Chain and the 10 step risk management process - Analytical tools and data are only useful if they are deployed within effective institutional processes. - There was a mismatch in the interviewees’ priorities for tools and processes with respect to risk mitigation: - Most extant tools and processes in the risk definition parts of the risk assessment process. - Most expressed needs are in the solutions area, where there are few operational tools available although there are several under development (See Figure 4). - The MVC is useful for framing a series of relevant questions to support a broader implementation of the risk management process, but is limited in scope w...



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O'Connell, Deborah; Lin, Brenda; Capon, Tim; Stafford Smith, Mark. Disaster resilience and mitigation. Short report on current and future capacity to deliver on risk assessment and mitigation needs. Canberra: CSIRO; 2015. https://doi.org/10.4225/08/58542ce98cfb4

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