Rajib Shaw*
*Keio University, Japan


Science and technology innovation has always been present in Asia, but its application in disaster risk reduction (DRR) has been differential. In Asia, globally significant hotspots of disasters and economic development have emerged in which the application of science and technology in DRR has become an essential requirement for informed decision making. Science has supported establishment and implementation of major international initiatives in DRR, including the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005–2015 (HFA). The more recent Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 recognizes the importance of science and technology in all of its priority action areas, and subsequent global and regional forums and conferences have reconfirmed science and technology’s importance. To perceive and monitor the progress of science and technology in DRR, a qualitative assessment of different countries is made using three major attributes: (1) science-based decision making; (2) investment in science and technology; and (3) the intensity of science’s link to the public. This assessment exercise points out several strengths and weaknesses in science and technology application; the method can be employed to develop future multi-stakeholder and multidisciplinary science and technology plans at the country level. To implement regional and national activities, a set of 15 recommendations is put forward, which will strengthen the collective regional “science voice” in DRR. The data-driven nature of the scientific research on disasters demands open access to data as it is impossible to fully understand the cause and impact of a disaster event without consulting multiple types of data. There is a strong need for international cooperation based on open data is crucial to the advancement of scientific research on disasters. The International Council for Science (ICSU) has successively established the World Data Centre (WDC) and the Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA) for information collection, exchange, service and sharing. ICSU is devoted to researching, observing and evaluating relevant data and information as well as their relations with decision-making, with open access of data comprising an important aspect; CODATA is committed to uplifting the quality, reliability, management and accessibility of data that holds great significance for the whole scientific community. Integrated Research on Disaster Risk (IRDR) is collaborating on CODATA on disaster related data issues, which is a major working group in IRDR.


DRR policy making, Science innovation, Science investment, Sendai Framework, Technology application