Addressing the needs of vulnerable groups in urban areas

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'Vulnerable', along with 'sustainable' and 'resilient', are three powerful words that appear so often in United Nations' recommendations and declarations – and in the literature on environment and development.

But are these now so commonly used that they are losing their power? Is the term 'vulnerable groups' used just as a convenient (but misleading) shorthand for showing concern for a long list of groups considered more at risk, without a need to ask why they are vulnerable and what needs to change?

An individual or household is said to be vulnerable to a risk (such as malaria-spreading mosquitoes, contaminated water or a flood) if they are more susceptible to being harmed or killed by it, or less able to cope or adapt (to lessen the risk). 

For instance, the lives of infants and young children are generally more at risk from malaria and contaminated water than the lives of adults. Groups more at risk to loss of their livelihood, income or assets – for instance to a flood – are also vulnerable.  

Is most of the world's population vulnerable?

It is now obligatory within UN declarations, discussions and recommendations to make special mention of 'vulnerable groups' or groups in vulnerable situations, and then often to list them – as in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)and the UN's 'New Urban Agenda' (PDF)

The SDGs include many mentions of vulnerable groups – as in the need for attention to "the poorest and most vulnerable" and "people in vulnerable situations". Mention is also made of vulnerable countries. Vulnerable groups are said to include children, youth, persons with disabilities, people living with HIV/AIDS, older persons, indigenous peoples, refugees and internally displaced persons and migrants. 

Within the New Urban Agenda, the word vulnerable appears 15 times and those who are said to be in vulnerable situations include women, children and youth, older persons and persons with disabilities, migrants, indigenous peoples and local communities (paragraph 34) and communities that are most vulnerable to disasters (29).  

But this means that almost all the world's population is vulnerable. The only people who are not vulnerable according to this list are working age men that are not old, or migrants or disabled or indigenous or community members, or those in communities most vulnerable to disasters.

Going beyond lists to removing the risks

Rarely do the UN texts go beyond these lists to ask why these groups are vulnerable and what is needed to reduce or remove their vulnerability.

It is not so much vulnerable groups that are at issue, but the vulnerability of particular groups of the population to specific risks. To term all women or youth or migrants as vulnerable groups is to misrepresent their knowledge and their capacities to act – to cope with risk, to adapt to lessen risk or to remove risk.  

This is the second of three blogs drawn from the editorial in the April 2017 issue of the international journal, Environment & Urbanization. This issue is on 'Understanding the full spectrum of risk in urban areas' and it was prepared in partnership with Urban Africa Risk Knowledge (Urban ARK). The first blog was on 'Urban risks: where are the top five biggest blinds spots?'

For infants and young children, much of their vulnerability to risk is to specific diseases. Provide them with a good quality healthcare that ensures they get all the needed vaccinations and rapid responses if ill or injured, and much of the vulnerability disappears. It disappears even more in good quality housing in neighbourhoods with safe play spaces. 

The vulnerability that many women face is so often related to the discrimination they face – within the household in tasks and food allocations, in labour markets, in access to land for housing and credit….

Water piped into each home that is safe, sufficient, regular and affordable, and good quality sanitation, together with an effective, easily-accessed healthcare system, enormously reduces the risks of premature death and ill health. There is no "vulnerable group" if the risk that they are vulnerable to is removed. 

In informal settlements that are vulnerable to serious flood risks every year, those living there are no longer vulnerable if investment in drainage and flood management remove the flood risk.  

But vulnerable groups that need support may also be mislabelled 'resilient'. Maria Kaika (in a paper in the April 2017 issue of Environment & Urbanization) notes how a focus on resilience can simply transfer responsibility from government to citizens. She gives the example of Tracie Washington, president of the Louisiana Justice Institute, who requested that policymakers and the media stop calling Hurricane Katrina and BP oil spill victims "resilient", pointing out that this can become an excuse by governments for not acting on removing the risks.

Local engagement to act on urban risk

So we need local knowledge on all the main risks, on who is most susceptible to each risk – and who lacks the capacity to cope and adapt.  And what is needed to reduce risk. So how do we get this? In ways that empower those most at risk?  

This is only possible if there is a local engagement with at risk groups. Interviews with flooded households in Niamey (Niger) in 2015 showed large differences in household capacity to cope and adapt.

city-wide risk assessment in Karonga (Malawi) showed the range of risks facing the population with a need to consider who is vulnerable to each risk – whether these risks are from infectious or parasitic diseases, chemical pollutants or physical hazards (such as accidental fires, drowning or road vehicle accidents).

In urban areas, local government has many important roles and responsibilities in reducing the presence of hazards and people's exposure to them. A key step is ensuring provision of risk-reducing infrastructure and services to all neighbourhoods (such as safe, sufficient, affordable water, and good-quality sanitation, electricity, healthcare and waste collection). 

Upgrading informal settlements should reduce or remove many life- and health-threatening risks – as infrastructure and services are provided and as risk of eviction is much reduced. But ill-designed upgrading can increase vulnerability if it does not serve the needs and priorities of the residents.

David Satterthwaite (david.satterthwaite@iied.org) is a senior fellow in IIED's Human Settlements research groupand visiting professor at the Development Planning Unit, University College London.

Standfirst: 

For the billion urban dwellers living in informal settlements, there are many risks. Those who are more susceptible to these risks, or less able to cope, are termed vulnerable. But they are not vulnerable if the risks are removed. We need to focus more on removing the risks and less on endless lists of 'vulnerable groups', argues David Satterthwaite.

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Urban risks: where are the top five biggest blind spots?

Undefined
Informal Settlement, Dar es Salaam

Whose lives are most at risk in urban areas of the global South – for instance from preventable diseases and disasters? And what are the most serious risks they face? We need a fuller picture/better data/more evidence on urban risk to inform governments and aid agencies and to guide their investment in risk-reducing infrastructure and services (such as safe, sufficient, affordable water, and good-quality sanitation, electricity, healthcare and waste collection).

For much of the world's 2.5 billion urban dwellers living in Africa and Asia, and for many in Latin America, there is surprisingly little information on the most serious health risks they face. 

So responses from urban governments and from national governments and international agencies that are meant to help address these are operating blind; there is little or no local data on the most serious health risks and their causes.

Where are the blind spots? 

The huge scale of premature death, illness, serious injury and impoverishment in urban areas that remains hidden because these are not recorded

Within this, the lack of health data for the billion people living in informal settlements 

No local records on many serious health problems. Surveys with relevant health data exist in most nations, but these do not provide the information needed for action: at street, ward, district and urban centre level

Discussion of risks often fails to include the 'everyday' risks from infectious and parasitic diseases even though these are usually the main causes of premature death in informal settlements, and

Documentation on the impacts of disasters usually covers only large disasters but in aggregate, floods or other disasters too small to be classified as disasters are among the main causes of premature death, injury and poverty in informal settlements. 

The lack of health data on informal settlements makes it impossible to plan and implement much needed upgrading programmes and effective disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.

Little local health data

We get some sense of the scale of the health issues from household surveys (such as the demographic and health surveys), which show very high infant, child and maternal mortality rates "for urban areas" in many African and Asian nations.

But for practical action, this kind of information is needed for each urban centre, district or ward – on what the problems are, where they are and who is most impacted.

Civil servants, politicians and civil society groups working at neighbourhood, ward, district and city levels may have some sense of the most serious health problems, based on their experience and on the concerns raised by the population within their jurisdictions.

But responses are often ill-focused, without data to guide their policies and to present to higher-ups. 

Lack of data for informal settlements

The availability of data is worst in the informal settlements that now house around a billion urban dwellers – and in many cities, house more than half the total population.

In Nairobi, the African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC) has shown that aggregate figures for infant and under-five mortality rates for the city hide the much higher rates in informal settlements.

Recent papers in The Lancet are also highlighting the lack of relevant data. But few city governments (or national governments) collect data on health problems in informal settlements. 

Measuring risk

It is possible to consider 'everyday' risks, risks from small and large disasters, and climate change using the same metrics – their contribution to premature death, illness and injury, damage to or destruction of homes and assets.

Everything that has impoverished, harmed or killed an individual or individuals in a city can in theory be recorded. This evidence can guide policy and implementation, especially for the city or municipal governments that are responsible for providing most risk-reducing infrastructure (such as safe, sufficient, affordable water; good-quality sanitation and electricity; all-weather access roads; and street lighting) and risk-reducing services (including healthcare, household waste collection, emergency services, rule of law/policing, and road traffic management).

What needs highlighting?

Among all the hazards facing urban populations, all the vulnerable groups, all the risks and all the factors that cause or influence these, what needs highlighting?

The first is the huge scale of premature death, illness, injury and impoverishment that remains hidden because these are not recorded and are not even seen as outcomes of risk by many actors.

The second is how much more serious this is in most informal settlements. The third is how effective risk reduction depends on the quality and capacity of local governments, including their capacity to listen to and work with those most at risk.

Assessments of risk for urban areas usually leave out the largest risk; the risk of premature death or serious impairment by illness from infectious and parasitic diseases.

It is likely that in most informal settlements, certain infectious and parasitic diseases will figure among the largest risks of premature death or impairment from illness. It is also likely in many cities that particular infectious and parasitic diseases are the highest risk for entire city populations – but with considerable differences in the scale of the risk by district and by income group.

It is likely that infant, child and maternal deaths represent a very high proportion of all premature deaths, concentrated in settlements where provision for risk-reducing infrastructure and services is worst.

What needs to happen?

Recognise how little we know: we have to start by admitting how little we know about the hazards facing much of the world's urban population, and thus also how little we know about the most serious risks they face.

Data on large disasters for cities (including the number of deaths) are recorded, although here it is difficult to get data for each urban centre that is impacted.

But data on disasters seldom include attention to disasters too small to be classified as a disaster (typically 10 or more deaths/or 100 or more people affected and/or a declaration of a state of emergency/call for international assistance) – that when taken together are the cause of so much premature death, injury and impoverishment.

Get a more complete picture: getting a more complete picture for any urban centre of the full spectrum of risks, and who is most at risk and why (and where they live), is a key underpinning for more effective action. This should also highlight where risk reduction is needed and is possible.

For those residents well served by risk-reducing infrastructure and services, many of the most common causes of premature death disappear – including infant and child deaths from diarrhoea and acute respiratory infections, and deaths from extreme weather events.

A good healthcare system should also remove TB and HIV/Aids from leading causes of death. Good provision for pedestrians and cyclists, and public transport and good traffic management can dramatically cut deaths and injuries from road traffic accidents. 

Changing perceptions, changing priorities: why is it that higher levels of government and international agencies give so little attention to this?

Why is there so little funding for effective city-wide provision for water, sanitation, drainage and solid waste removal? Why are the data needed on risk and its causes not available for each urban centre and its districts, wards and neighbourhoods?

Why do we know so much about the global burden of disease, but so little about the burden of disease in each locality (which is where the data are actually needed to guide action)? 

Enhancing the information base: all urban centres need an information base on the main causes of premature death (perhaps especially for infants, children, youth and mothers), serious illness, injury and impoverishment that can be made available for each small area (or if possible each street) and that can be mapped to show where each risk is concentrated.

Census data should be able to provide some data on health determinants (such as quality of provision for water and sanitation) even if only available every 10 years. It should be seen as a public good, with census authorities providing local governments with data on conditions in their jurisdiction, down to each street.

Vital registration systems need to be set up or restored so they can provide data on deaths, causes, age and location. Data from these should be available not only to local governments but also to citizens and civil society groups, and of course with census or survey data also guaranteeing the anonymity of respondents.

Police, fire service and hospital records should contribute relevant data – although hospital records provide no data on the many who cannot access hospitals.

Then there are the detailed surveys and maps of informal settlements undertaken in hundreds of cities by slum/shack dweller federations. These provide much of the data needed to inform risk reduction and engage local populations in setting priorities and acting on them. 

Standfirst: 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Urban risks: where are the top five biggest blind spots?

Undefined
Informal Settlement, Dar es Salaam

Whose lives are most at risk in urban areas of the global South – for instance from preventable diseases and disasters? And what are the most serious risks they face? We need a fuller picture/better data/more evidence on urban risk to inform governments and aid agencies and to guide their investment in risk-reducing infrastructure and services (such as safe, sufficient, affordable water, and good-quality sanitation, electricity, healthcare and waste collection).

For much of the world's 2.5 billion urban dwellers living in Africa and Asia, and for many in Latin America, there is surprisingly little information on the most serious health risks they face. 

So responses from urban governments and from national governments and international agencies that are meant to help address these are operating blind; there is little or no local data on the most serious health risks and their causes.

Where are the blind spots? 

The huge scale of premature death, illness, serious injury and impoverishment in urban areas that remains hidden because these are not recorded

Within this, the lack of health data for the billion people living in informal settlements 

No local records on many serious health problems. Surveys with relevant health data exist in most nations, but these do not provide the information needed for action: at street, ward, district and urban centre level

Discussion of risks often fails to include the 'everyday' risks from infectious and parasitic diseases even though these are usually the main causes of premature death in informal settlements, and

Documentation on the impacts of disasters usually covers only large disasters but in aggregate, floods or other disasters too small to be classified as disasters are among the main causes of premature death, injury and poverty in informal settlements. 

The lack of health data on informal settlements makes it impossible to plan and implement much needed upgrading programmes and effective disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.

Little local health data

We get some sense of the scale of the health issues from household surveys (such as the demographic and health surveys), which show very high infant, child and maternal mortality rates "for urban areas" in many African and Asian nations.

But for practical action, this kind of information is needed for each urban centre, district or ward – on what the problems are, where they are and who is most impacted.

Civil servants, politicians and civil society groups working at neighbourhood, ward, district and city levels may have some sense of the most serious health problems, based on their experience and on the concerns raised by the population within their jurisdictions.

But responses are often ill-focused, without data to guide their policies and to present to higher-ups. 

Lack of data for informal settlements

The availability of data is worst in the informal settlements that now house around a billion urban dwellers – and in many cities, house more than half the total population.

In Nairobi, the African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC) has shown that aggregate figures for infant and under-five mortality rates for the city hide the much higher rates in informal settlements.

Recent papers in The Lancet are also highlighting the lack of relevant data. But few city governments (or national governments) collect data on health problems in informal settlements. 

Measuring risk

It is possible to consider 'everyday' risks, risks from small and large disasters, and climate change using the same metrics – their contribution to premature death, illness and injury, damage to or destruction of homes and assets.

Everything that has impoverished, harmed or killed an individual or individuals in a city can in theory be recorded. This evidence can guide policy and implementation, especially for the city or municipal governments that are responsible for providing most risk-reducing infrastructure (such as safe, sufficient, affordable water; good-quality sanitation and electricity; all-weather access roads; and street lighting) and risk-reducing services (including healthcare, household waste collection, emergency services, rule of law/policing, and road traffic management).

What needs highlighting?

Among all the hazards facing urban populations, all the vulnerable groups, all the risks and all the factors that cause or influence these, what needs highlighting?

The first is the huge scale of premature death, illness, injury and impoverishment that remains hidden because these are not recorded and are not even seen as outcomes of risk by many actors.

The second is how much more serious this is in most informal settlements. The third is how effective risk reduction depends on the quality and capacity of local governments, including their capacity to listen to and work with those most at risk.

Assessments of risk for urban areas usually leave out the largest risk; the risk of premature death or serious impairment by illness from infectious and parasitic diseases.

It is likely that in most informal settlements, certain infectious and parasitic diseases will figure among the largest risks of premature death or impairment from illness. It is also likely in many cities that particular infectious and parasitic diseases are the highest risk for entire city populations – but with considerable differences in the scale of the risk by district and by income group.

It is likely that infant, child and maternal deaths represent a very high proportion of all premature deaths, concentrated in settlements where provision for risk-reducing infrastructure and services is worst.

What needs to happen?

Recognise how little we know: we have to start by admitting how little we know about the hazards facing much of the world's urban population, and thus also how little we know about the most serious risks they face.

Data on large disasters for cities (including the number of deaths) are recorded, although here it is difficult to get data for each urban centre that is impacted.

But data on disasters seldom include attention to disasters too small to be classified as a disaster (typically 10 or more deaths/or 100 or more people affected and/or a declaration of a state of emergency/call for international assistance) – that when taken together are the cause of so much premature death, injury and impoverishment.

Get a more complete picture: getting a more complete picture for any urban centre of the full spectrum of risks, and who is most at risk and why (and where they live), is a key underpinning for more effective action. This should also highlight where risk reduction is needed and is possible.

For those residents well served by risk-reducing infrastructure and services, many of the most common causes of premature death disappear – including infant and child deaths from diarrhoea and acute respiratory infections, and deaths from extreme weather events.

A good healthcare system should also remove TB and HIV/Aids from leading causes of death. Good provision for pedestrians and cyclists, and public transport and good traffic management can dramatically cut deaths and injuries from road traffic accidents. 

Changing perceptions, changing priorities: why is it that higher levels of government and international agencies give so little attention to this?

Why is there so little funding for effective city-wide provision for water, sanitation, drainage and solid waste removal? Why are the data needed on risk and its causes not available for each urban centre and its districts, wards and neighbourhoods?

Why do we know so much about the global burden of disease, but so little about the burden of disease in each locality (which is where the data are actually needed to guide action)? 

Enhancing the information base: all urban centres need an information base on the main causes of premature death (perhaps especially for infants, children, youth and mothers), serious illness, injury and impoverishment that can be made available for each small area (or if possible each street) and that can be mapped to show where each risk is concentrated.

Census data should be able to provide some data on health determinants (such as quality of provision for water and sanitation) even if only available every 10 years. It should be seen as a public good, with census authorities providing local governments with data on conditions in their jurisdiction, down to each street.

Vital registration systems need to be set up or restored so they can provide data on deaths, causes, age and location. Data from these should be available not only to local governments but also to citizens and civil society groups, and of course with census or survey data also guaranteeing the anonymity of respondents.

Police, fire service and hospital records should contribute relevant data – although hospital records provide no data on the many who cannot access hospitals.

Then there are the detailed surveys and maps of informal settlements undertaken in hundreds of cities by slum/shack dweller federations. These provide much of the data needed to inform risk reduction and engage local populations in setting priorities and acting on them. 

Standfirst: 

 

 

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Spotlight on the MSc Water: Science and Governance programme

  The MSc Water: Science and Governance programme draws on the university’s leading reputation in water research to equip students with advanced interdisciplinary training to tackle the contemporary challenges of diverse water environments around the world. Combined with international research excellence in water science, … Continue reading

Mapping for Change: Profiling Informal Settlements in Freetown, Sierra Leone

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As part of the Urban ARK Work Programme 4 (WP4) work on ‘Governance, Planning and Urban Development in Freetown’, the DPU team represented by Emmanuel Osuteye and Rita Lambert organized a 3-day capacity building workshop in Freetown, Sierra Leone. This was done in partnership with researchers from the Sierra Leone Urban Research Centre (SLURC) led by Braima Koroma who are serving as the city leads for the Urban ARK work in sierra Leone.

The main purpose of the workshop was to train a team of recruited volunteers drawn from residents of a number of informal settlements, members of the Federation of the Urban Poor and other local NGO representatives that are active within the informal settlements, in risk mapping methods integrated into a wider process of conducting a settlement profiles (both manually, and aided by the use of GPS-enabled mobile phone applications). The tools and method learnt as part of the workshop were immediately applied in profiling two selected informal settlements; Cockle Bay and Dwozark. These two represented the commonest geographic and physical characteristics of informal settlements in Freetown (coastal and hillside respectively).

The focus of this profiling exercise was to gather information on the range of risks that were prevalent in the settlements and the corresponding vulnerabilities of residents. As well as document the risk mitigation, reduction and recovery strategies, and the investments and interventions that characterized their collective capacities to act in the face of the risks or disasters.

The scope of these settlement profiles as part of the WP4 component of the DPU’s Urban ARK research led by Adriana Allen, is to work in 15 informal settlements across Freetown by July 2017, and this will be coordinated by the DPU and SLURC teams working closely with smaller groups of the trained workshop participants.  All the data gathered will be synthesizes and visualized in the online tool “ReMapRisk Freetown” - an interactive cartographic database developed by the UCL team to document and monitor how risk accumulation cycles or 'urban risk traps' materialise over time and where.

 

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Mapping for Change: Profiling Informal Settlements in Freetown, Sierra Leone

Undefined

As part of the Urban ARK Work Programme 4 (WP4) work on ‘Governance, Planning and Urban Development in Freetown’, the DPU team represented by Emmanuel Osuteye and Rita Lambert organized a 3-day capacity building workshop in Freetown, Sierra Leone. This was done in partnership with researchers from the Sierra Leone Urban Research Centre (SLURC) led by Braima Koroma who are serving as the city leads for the Urban ARK work in sierra Leone.

The main purpose of the workshop was to train a team of recruited volunteers drawn from residents of a number of informal settlements, members of the Federation of the Urban Poor and other local NGO representatives that are active within the informal settlements, in risk mapping methods integrated into a wider process of conducting a settlement profiles (both manually, and aided by the use of GPS-enabled mobile phone applications). The tools and method learnt as part of the workshop were immediately applied in profiling two selected informal settlements; Cockle Bay and Dwozark. These two represented the commonest geographic and physical characteristics of informal settlements in Freetown (coastal and hillside respectively).

The focus of this profiling exercise was to gather information on the range of risks that were prevalent in the settlements and the corresponding vulnerabilities of residents. As well as document the risk mitigation, reduction and recovery strategies, and the investments and interventions that characterized their collective capacities to act in the face of the risks or disasters.

The scope of these settlement profiles as part of the WP4 component of the DPU’s Urban ARK research led by Adriana Allen, is to work in 15 informal settlements across Freetown by July 2017, and this will be coordinated by the DPU and SLURC teams working closely with smaller groups of the trained workshop participants.  All the data gathered will be synthesizes and visualized in the online tool “ReMapRisk Freetown” - an interactive cartographic database developed by the UCL team to document and monitor how risk accumulation cycles or 'urban risk traps' materialise over time and where.

 

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Building collective capacity to disrupt urban risk traps: capacity building workshop in Karonga Malawi

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The DPU’s Emmanuel Osuteye, Rita Lambert and PhD Candidate Donald Brown, as part of the Urban ARK workpackage 4 (WP4), conducted a 3-day capacity building workshop in February 2017 to enhance the capacity of Neighbourhood Disaster Risk Management (NDRM) Committees in Karonga, Malawi to monitor and document the processes that drive risk accumulation over time and to appraise the practices deployed and resources mobilized to mitigate, reduce and prevent risk. 

This component of the DPU’s Urban ARK research led by Adriana Allen aims to provide fresh insights into how the governance of risk reduction currently works in the context of Malawi and to enhance the capacity to act of those most vulnerable to be trapped in risk accumulation cycles.

In summary the objectives of the training delivered were:

•    To corroborate the working boundaries of the NDRM committees and identify the boundaries of the neighbourhood or villages within each of them (hither to, these boundaries have not been officially demarcated and the Urban ARK project presents a great opportunity to document local traditional knowledge).

•   To consolidate and validate the knowledge relating to the hazards and vulnerabilities affecting the settlements within each Neighbourhood and evaluate the capacity to mitigate, reduce and prevent risk.

•   To equip participants with skills to map (both manually and through mobile processing applications like “Ramblr”) and systematically monitor the above conditions.

One of the targeted outputs of this mapping process is to generate localized and georeferenced data on the hazard profile, vulnerabilities, and capacities to act within the different neighbourhoods. This data will be synthesized into a virtual analytical tool called “ReMapRisk Karonga”.

In all 5 villages were mapped as part of the workshop and a team of the trained NDRM Representatives, supported by Mtafu Manda and the Urban ARK research counterparts at Mzuzu University, Malawi, will continue mapping the remaining villages by end of July 2017.  The workshop also had UCT’s Naomi Roux (WP3) in attendance, supporting the process.

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Building collective capacity to disrupt urban risk traps: capacity building workshop in Karonga Malawi

Undefined

The DPU’s Emmanuel Osuteye, Rita Lambert and PhD Candidate Donald Brown, as part of the Urban ARK workpackage 4 (WP4), conducted a 3-day capacity building workshop in February 2017 to enhance the capacity of Neighbourhood Disaster Risk Management (NDRM) Committees in Karonga, Malawi to monitor and document the processes that drive risk accumulation over time and to appraise the practices deployed and resources mobilized to mitigate, reduce and prevent risk. 

This component of the DPU’s Urban ARK research led by Adriana Allen aims to provide fresh insights into how the governance of risk reduction currently works in the context of Malawi and to enhance the capacity to act of those most vulnerable to be trapped in risk accumulation cycles.

In summary the objectives of the training delivered were:

•    To corroborate the working boundaries of the NDRM committees and identify the boundaries of the neighbourhood or villages within each of them (hither to, these boundaries have not been officially demarcated and the Urban ARK project presents a great opportunity to document local traditional knowledge).

•   To consolidate and validate the knowledge relating to the hazards and vulnerabilities affecting the settlements within each Neighbourhood and evaluate the capacity to mitigate, reduce and prevent risk.

•   To equip participants with skills to map (both manually and through mobile processing applications like “Ramblr”) and systematically monitor the above conditions.

One of the targeted outputs of this mapping process is to generate localized and georeferenced data on the hazard profile, vulnerabilities, and capacities to act within the different neighbourhoods. This data will be synthesized into a virtual analytical tool called “ReMapRisk Karonga”.

In all 5 villages were mapped as part of the workshop and a team of the trained NDRM Representatives, supported by Mtafu Manda and the Urban ARK research counterparts at Mzuzu University, Malawi, will continue mapping the remaining villages by end of July 2017.  The workshop also had UCT’s Naomi Roux (WP3) in attendance, supporting the process.

 

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