ISET-International's work on Disaster Risk Management combines basic understanding of the complex risks facing society with practical strategies for involving communities and local government in addressing the challenges within local contexts. As such, our approach brings a unique combination of globalized scientific and technical insight together with the factors that influence action by individuals and communities to address evolving disaster risks. Such risks emerge from global processes such as climate change and urbanization and from local conditions that determine exposure to natural and other hazards. Our specific expertise includes processes for shared learning, vulnerability analysis, climate and hydrological sciences, and economic evaluation of risk management strategies.
The larger context into which our work falls is important to recognize. Natural hazards contribute greatly to endemic poverty around the world. Socially and economically marginalized families often have no option other than to live in areas highly exposed to hazards and find it difficult to reconstruct livelihoods following disasters. Climate change will alter the frequency and intensity of major climate-related hazards such as floods, droughts and heat waves, while causing slow-onset seasonal changes as well as variation in overall temperatures and rainfall. In order to ensure poverty reduction and positive development gains, it is necessary to take a multi-hazard approach which considers both current and likely changes in the nature of hazards.