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Building disaster resilience: The road from Sendai

Francis Ghesquiere's picture
Barely a month has passed since the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction  where the international community agreed on the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, which will guide global efforts to prevent new and reduce existing disaster risk through 2030. As leaders from our 188 member countries arrive in Washington, D.C., this week for the 2015 Spring Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund, we have an excellent opportunity to take stock of how to best achieve the ambitious goals set forth in Sendai.
The new Sendai framework, endorsed after extensive deliberations, sets out four priorities, including investing in disaster risk reduction, as well as seven targets which include enhanced international cooperation and adequate financing to complement national level plans by countries towards implementation of the framework.
The launch of this new framework comes as precursor to a series of international discussions that will shape the architecture of development finance in years ahead.  These include the  Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FfD) in Addis Ababa this July, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) discussions in September, and the climate negotiations in Paris in December:
  • The financing for development discussions aim to set priorities and recommendations for financing to implement and achieve the SDGs.
  • The SDGs in turn will comprise goals and targets on key sustainable development issues that countries will use to frame their development policies and actions through 2030.
  • The climate negotiations will hopefully bring global agreement on how the international community will tackle carbon emissions, and also provide support to developing countries affected by a changing climate. 
All three of these discussions converge on the issue of resilience. 
These upcoming key development forums provide the international community with a unique opportunity to bring coherence across policies, institutions, goals, and indicators to measure implementation progress. It is therefore not only timely, but also critical, that resilience is integrated into these discussions. 
It will be important to highlight the issue of resilience at this week’s IMF/World Bank Group Spring Meetings, where Addis, New York and Paris will already be on everyone’s minds.  
As is now tradition, the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) will host the Resilience Dialogue series on the sidelines of the meetings — this instance, The Road to Addis: Financing Resilience in the post-2015 World, will explore how the targets and priorities set by the new Sendai framework can best be reflected in the key international frameworks to be agreed later this year. The event will feature Rachel Kyte, World Bank Group Vice President and Special Envoy for Climate Change, and Kiyoshi Kodera, Vice President of the Japan International Cooperation Agency, among other distinguished speakers.
Whether through investment in infrastructure, new mechanisms for climate finance, a greater role of the private sector, or mobilization of domestic resources, resilience is now accepted as a core element of sustainable development. 
Investing in resilience is smart development. Let’s work together, as we did in Sendai, to ensure we keep this issue at the forefront of the development agenda in the coming months, so we can build a safer future for those most at risk.
Add your voice to the conversation at the Resilience Dialogue via twitter by using @GFDRR and #resiliencedialogue, as well as sending your questions for panelists to The event will stream live at 5 p.m. (EDT) on Thursday, April 16

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