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30 Innovations Linking Disaster Risk Reduction with Sustainable Development Goals

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Izumi, Takako, Shaw, Rajib, Ishiwatari, Mikio, Djalante, Riyanti, Komino, Takeshi, Sukhwani, Vibhas and Adu Gyamfi, Bismark (2020). 30 Innovations Linking Disaster Risk Reduction with Sustainable Development Goals. United Nations University.

This publication is developed by a group of individuals from the International Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS) at Tohoku University, Keio University, the University of Tokyo, the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS), and Church World Service (CWS) Japan in collaboration with the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) Multi-Hazards Program. The case studies of the 30 innovations were selected in a series of discussions with the group. The innovations are not limited to the 30 cases included in this publication.


As we enter the new decade, it is becoming abundantly clear that greater commitment and accelerated action is urgently needed to help meet their commitments to combat climate change and reduce disaster risk. A transformation of this magnitude calls for new ways of thinking and operating, underscoring the need to promote innovation as a critical factor in the achievement of the 2030 Agenda, including the Sendai Framework and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Innovations might include technology-based solutions that help resource-constrained countries implement change at scale or community-based innovations that address local needs, or maybe applications of traditional and indigenous knowledge to solve modern problems. This wide diversity in innovation was well-captured in the “30 Innovations for Disaster Risk Reduction” publication which was released in May 2019 at the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction.

Not surprisingly, countries and communities seeking to fast-track resilience-building have made a strong call for more examples and case studies of how innovation is helping to achieve tangible results in disaster risk reduction (DRR). Accordingly, I am pleased that this second volume of “30 Innovations” provides even more examples of innovative solutions and good practices that inspire us to think “outside the box” and test new ideas that will propel progress in reducing disaster and climate risk.

The second volume of “30 Innovations” is unique in that it links disaster risk reduction with the Sustainable Development Goals and highlights sector-based DRR innovations. These innovations emphasize the multi-sectoral dimensions of DRR and remind us that only a transversal, collaborative approach will allow us to achieve our common objective of mitigating risks. Just one example included in “30 Innovations” is the growing cooperation between DRR, climate change adaption and environmental protection agencies, as demonstrated by the results of the 200-respondent survey included in the publication. “30 Innovations” is a welcome addition to the set of tools that countries and communities need to address the challenges of increasing climate and disaster risks. The future of DRR needs to be innovative, sustainable, and people-centred if we are to succeed in tackling these global challenges and building resilience for all. “30 Innovations” is an important step helping to lead us in this direction.

Ms. Loretta Hieber Girardet

Chief, United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction,

Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific