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Risk, Disaster and Emergency Management


We view effective emergency management as a key component in a holistic approach dedicated to making communities safer and more resilient. We work with rural and Aboriginal communities to increase capacity to better mitigate potential risks, as well as boost abilities to prepare for, respond to, and recover from, emergencies and crises. By resilience we mean the capability to deal with underlying systemic problems and the ability to anticipate and handle major changes, including crises situations.

Our research on risk and disaster management have encompassed many hazards including tornadoes, water contamination, blackouts, nuclear waste and climate change.

Ongoing Project:
Rural Ontario Municipal Emergency Management and Critical Infrastructure: Enhancing Planning and Preparedness Capacities for Climate Change Resilience

This is a three year project funded by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Climate change is leading to increasing impacts on critical infrastructure and Ontario municipalities are mandated to have emergency management plans to address these threats.

Downed power lines after an ice storm on a snow covered fieldWhile 75% of Ontario municipalities are at least partly rural, important knowledge gaps exist regarding the distinct vulnerabilities and resiliencies in rural communities to actively cope with these impacts, including extreme events. To enhance municipal emergency management planning and strengthen adaptive capacities, the study undertakes collaborative research with a multi-institutional research team and uses a mixed methods approach. The goal is to further integrate emergency management with critical infrastructure planning approaches. We develop the eXtreme events Toolkit for Rural Emergency Management Enhancement (xTREME) that includes a policy brief for decision-makers, a resource guide for practitioners, a tabletop exercise, and an executive summary.

For examples of other work we’ve been involved with, please see http://wp-rdrp-dev.jibc.ca/ and https://adrp.jibc.ca/

Please see our Publications page for more information.