Nepalese firemen participating in a disaster drill / by UNDP Nepal

Mainstreaming disaster risk management into academia

Mainstreaming disaster risk management (DRM) into academic curricula is the key to foster the knowledge to build risk resilient society.┬áTribhuvan University, Central Department of Environmental Science (TU-CDES) has developed the 100 Marks Disaster Risk Management course in its Master’s Degree Programme in Environmental Science. This is the first of its kind to mainstream DRM into academia where under the Strengthening Disaster Risk Management in Academia – a project funded by UNDP – TU-CDES has been performing research work on multi-hazard risk assessment in Nepal’s mountains. This initiative is significant, as it will produce skillful and trained human resources who are much needed if the country is to cope with the disaster challenges and climate uncertainties.

Case Study

Mainstreaming disaster risk management into academia: a way of securing the future

HFA Priority

HFA Priority 3: Use knowledge, innovation and education to build a culture of safety and resilience at all levels.

Context

There was a lack of skillful and trained human resources and no initiative was taken before to mainstream DRM into the academic sector.

Location

TU-Central Department of Environmental Science, University Campus, Kirtipur, Kathmandu, Nepal.

How the problem was addressed?

The curricula for DRM has been prepared and incorporated in a Master’s degree course on environmental science. Since last year, this course was taught involving students through education and research: community work, case studies and theses.

TU-CDES incorporated the DRM course in its Master’s Degree programme. The Dean’s Office of the faculty of Science and Technology of TU approved the course curricula. TU-CDES under its Strengthening Disaster Risk Management in Academia – a project funded by UNDP, organized various consultations to prepare the course curricula on DRM.

The initial challenge was deciding which academic institution would be the best to incorporate the subject. TU-CDES was found to be appropriate.

Skillful and trained human resources on disaster risk management are needed in the country. Their applied knowledge can greatly contribute to build the risk resilient society.

This is the first venture of its kind to incorporate DRM into academia and environmental science is the multi-disciplinary science in TU, which is well suited for integration of the disaster risk management course.

Results

Skillful and trained human resource on disaster risk management produced.

Measuring success

Mainstreaming disaster risk management into academic curricula is the key element of success that helps to produce skillful and trained human resources.

The published syllabus is the key indicator to measure the success. The enrollment of students and their contribution through research and applied fields on DRM are the other indicators to measure the success.

Relevance to HFA

It has directly contributed to HFA priority 3 and particularly aligns itself with key activities such as education and training, and research. It helps to foster the knowledge on DRM and contribute to produce skillful and trained human resources. It also contributes to improving multi-hazard risk assessment through promoting the research culture.

Potential for replication

This is the good initiative to promote disaster risk management and integrate it into academia which will secure the future with developing the coping and adaptive capacity to tackle disaster challenges and climate uncertainties. This is a replicable initiative, which encourages all schools and higher institutions to mainstream disaster risk management into curricula as a key component.

Contribution by

Key Person:

Name: Kedar Rijal, PhD

Designation: Prof & Head of Department

Institution: Tribhuvan University, Central Department of Environmental Science, Kathmandu, Nepal

Phone: 977-1-4332147

Email: krijal@cdes.edu.np

Contact Person:

Name: Amrit Prasad Sharma

Designation: Project Manager,

Institution: Strengthening Disaster Risk Management in Academia Project, TU-Central Department of Environmental Science, Kirtipur, Kathmandu, Nepal

Cell: 977-9841259633

Email: asharma@cdes.edu.np