Author Archives: ubccra

Indigenous approaches to disaster risk reduction

How can indigenous worldview inform and guide disaster risk reduction initiatives?  This 3 minute interview with Melanie Goodchild, Senior Counsel, Indigenous Relations at Canadian Red Cross provides some invaluable insights.

National Volunteer Week

April 10 to April 16, 2016 is a National Volunteer Week:

“Volunteers are the roots of strong communities. Just like roots are essential for trees to bloom, volunteers are essential for communities to boom. Thanks to volunteers, our communities grow strong and resilient. Even the tiniest volunteer effort leaves a profound and lasting trace in a community, much like tree rings that appear over time”.

Volunteers are the foundation of community resilience and effective emergency management.

Stay tuned for our Spring issue of HazNet which focuses on Volunteers and Volunteer Management in Canada (to be released during the EP week).

For resources visit
Watch this video celebrating 12.7 million volunteers in Canada:

Interview with Margareta Wahlstrom

This November we interviewed Margareta Wahlstrom who served for many years as the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction. Here is her message to Canadians on what Disaster Risk Reduction is all about. Full version of the interview will be available in the spring issue of HazNet:

Resources for the National Emergency Preparedness Week from Public Safety Canada

Emergency Preparedness Week (EP Week) is an annual event that takes place each year during the first full week of May. This national event is coordinated by Public Safety Canada, in close collaboration with the provinces and territories and partners.

The national theme of EP Week 2016 will indeed be “Plan. Prepare. Be Aware.”

Twitter: The official hashtags for EP Week: #EPWeek / #SemaineSC .  Public Safety will be tweeting throughout EP Week from @Get_Prepared / @Preparez_Vous, using these hashtags.

 Web and social media graphics: Public Safety has developed a number of graphics that you can use to support you in your online promotional efforts.  These images are available at:

 Link to online resources: Public Safety Canada’s Get Prepared website ( is a great resource for you to use.  For those of you not already familiar with this site, it includes a number of helpful products including the EP Week Toolkit, EP Guide for People with Disabilities/Special Needs, links to the Canadian Disaster Database, short videos, presentations, free online publications and posters and all sorts of resources to help Canadians know the risks, make a plan, and get a kit.

 For more information regarding what’s happening across the country, please visit:

CRHNet Annual Symposium 2016: Inspiring Resilience





November 23-25, 2016, Hyatt Regency Montreal

1255 rue Jeanne-Mance, C.P. 130,
Montréal, Québec
Canada  H5B 1E5

At a time when governments are challenged to pursue a wide array of diversified short term and long term priorities, disasters appear as marginal occurrences. However, everyday, disaster risks impose on Canadians a heavier burden. From prevention and mitigation requirements to significant investments in recovery efforts, disasters remain part of our daily reality.

The goal of disaster resilience belongs to the society at large. The traditional approach of government programs and plans implementation seems to be reaching its achievement limits. It is now the time to revisit current approaches and consider empowering every component of civil society to contribute to disaster resilience. Beyond the call for a shared responsibility, everyone possesses assets for disaster resilience, and more importantly, everyone deserves a share of the benefits in making Canada a disaster resilient country.

This CRHNet symposium wishes to explore paths toward empowering Canadian civil society into disaster resilience. It is now time to look at intrinsic motivations and distributed benefits, rather than relying only on legislation, program and funding as the primary instruments to achieve disaster resilience.

Call for Sessions, Presentations and Posters      

CRHNet calls for session, presentation and poster proposals from researchers and practitioners to inspire the Canadian disaster risk reduction community on informative, creative, innovative and proven means to achieve success. Your special session defines a particular theme and would host relevant presentations and posters. CRHNet will give prominence to posters during the symposium.

Please use the online submission form for your session, presentation and poster proposals. For enquires, please contact the CRHNet Executive Director

Resilience Canada 2016

Resilience Canada 2016 will take place on April 26-27 in Toronto, Canada.

Resilience Canada 2016 will bring together experts from across Canada and internationally to share their lessons and insights on how to create resilience based on their experiences in dealing with a range of major disasters and crises. The aim of this event is to learn from the experiences of others so that we can implement resilience well in advance of any crisis or disaster, allowing us to recover better and faster than before. Representatives from local governments, non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, and the private sector will be attending.

This year’s event will be focusing on three main themes:

  1. Building a Resilient City – Case Studies from Toronto and Elsewhere
  2. The Challenge of Wildfires
  3. Transportation of Dangerous Goods

You can read the full event description, full speaker list and more about the event here.


Show Me ShakeOut’ Poster & Video Contest

The poster contest is open to students in kindergarten to grade 7. Complete contest details, entry form links and examples of past winners can be found by visiting

Two winners will be awarded an iPad each. The video contest is open to students in grades 8 to 12. The winner will receive a $1,000 bursary. Prizes are sponsored by the Insurance Bureau of Canada.

Winning submissions will be used by ShakeOutBC  to promote the importance of earthquake preparedness and how the simple steps of “Drop, Cover and Hold” can save lives. They’ll also be featured on the ShakeOutBC website, Twitter feed, YouTube channel and Facebook page.

The submission deadline is April 25, 2016. The winners will be announced May 4 during Emergency Preparedness Week (May 1 to 7).

The new HazNet: a special issue on Resilience is here!

The new HazNet, Canada’s premier publication on disaster risk reduction and resilience is here!

Read online or download  here

In this issue:


Emergency preparedness and resilience: Results from a survey of Canadians


With Chief Resilience Officers for Boston and San Francisco


Planning for Resilience: the Dutch Way haznet


Community Resilience: One Approach in New Jersey

Public-Private-Nonprofit Partnerships for Resilience


Resiliency Beyond the Earthquakes


Flyover: The Straight of Georgia


Community Based Pre-Disaster Recovery Planning: City of Port Coquitlam


Using Emerging Technologies to Improve Community Resilience


Enhancing Resilience in the EOC

Resilience Policy – Practice Gaps: New Opportunity or Business as Usual

Linking People and Communities to Resilience

New book: Disaster Theory

A new book by the Crisis Resilience Alliance member David Etkin “Disaster Theory: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Concepts and Causes”

Disaster Theory offers a theoretical background in the important topics related to understanding disaster. Drawing on related disciplines including sociology, risk theory, and seminal research on disasters and emergency management, Disaster Theory clearly lays out the conceptual framework of the emerging field of disaster studies. Tailored to the needs of advanced undergraduates and graduate students, this unique text makes an ideal capstone for students who have already been introduced to the fundamentals of emergency management. Disaster Theory emphasizes the application of critical thinking in understanding disasters and their causes by synthesizing a wide range of information on theory and practice, including input from leading scholars in the field.

 Key Features:

  •  Offers the first cohesive depiction of disaster theory
  •  Incorporates material from leading thinkers in the field, as well as student exercises and critical thinking questions, making this a rich resource for advanced courses
  •  Written from an international perspective and includes case studies of disasters and hazards from around the world for comparing the leading models of emergency response
  •  Challenges the reader to think critically about important questions in disaster management from various points of view
  •  Employs a broad interdisciplinary approach to give students a sophisticated understanding of this field of study

Author Bio:

David Etkin is an Associate Professor of Disaster and Emergency Management at York University, Toronto Canada.  He has contributed to several national and international natural hazard projects including the 2nd U.S. national assessment of natural hazards, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), two NATO workshops, was Principal Investigator of the Canadian National Assessment of Natural Hazards, and is Past President of the Canadian Risk and Hazards Network. His research interests focus on disaster management, risk and climate change. He has over 80 publications to his credit, including 6 edited volumes.

Published by Elsevier, Inc.

Youth Disaster Risk Education, Action, & Mobilization (DREAM) Council

Youth and young professionals can play leadership roles in educating, preparing  and recovering from disasters.

The Canadian Youth Disaster Risk Education, Action, & Mobilization (DREAM) Council is a joint initiative of the Canadian Risks and Hazards Network, Crisis Resilience Alliance, Educonnexion, and University partners.

If you are interested in becoming an affirming partner, a university representative or would like to learn more please email:

DREAM Council will seek to achieve the following objectives:

  • Build partnerships to enhance, increase, and implement engagement of youth in disaster prevention programs;
  • Enable future generation of emergency mangers and disaster prevention specialists across Canada;
  • Provide recommendations to partners on increasing disaster resilience from the newly established Youth Disaster Risk Reduction Advisory Council;
  • Connect and enable youth leadership within their communities and nationally;
  • Increase school and university preparedness.
  • Build volunteer capacity and connections among youth, young professionals and communities.