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Conference Agenda

Overview and details of the sessions of this conference. Please select a date or room to show only sessions at that day or location. Please select a single session for detailed view (with abstracts and downloads if available).

Session Overview
WED1.3: A converging vision of resilience building between the private sector and civil society
Time: Wednesday, 29/Aug/2012: 8:30am - 10:00am
Session Chair: Andrew MITCHELL, Disaster Risk Management Consultant, France
Location: Sertig



A converging vision of resilience building between the private sector and civil society


ACF, France

The factors contributing to, and the nature of, the disasters of today and tomorrow are changing and are presenting challenges for all actors. The interests of the private sector and civil society to address disaster is increasingly converging, creating new opportunities, with more common ground identifiable, and with concrete examples how partnerships are being set up to exploit this common ground. Here, there are increasing efforts to tackle disaster risk as a complete system acknowledging complexity and uncertainty when designing solutions: resilience building is the latest effort to centralise previous best practice from different sectors and actors, aligned to a common strategy or plan, and better involving different partners working at different timeframes, scales and across different thematic. Business and civil society are both looking beyond direct action on a target business or population to more broadly creating an enabling environment for sustainable functioning that considers the systems in which these targets belong to. There is a shift from focusing on short-term disaster response and damage control to a more long-term and continuous management of risk through resilience building around multi-hazard disaster cycles.

The session aims to illustrate the overlap in interests and action between local groups, international civil society and the private sector for creating resilience to natural and man-made disaster for communities vulnerable to these. It aims to be at once informative in comparing and contrasting visions of risk management and resilience coming from different key actors, whilst allowing interaction with the audience to pursue the commonalities and potential opportunities for integrated action between local groups, international civil society and the private sector.

Building Resilient Nations and Communities

Marcus OXLEY

Global Network for Disaster Reduction UK, United Kingdom

In a global context where multiple risks are increasing, social, economic, environmental and political risks are increasingly inter-connected and mutually reinforcing. Building social and economic resilience is the best way to protect against multiple risks in the face of complexity and uncertainty. Here, a common set of resilience principles provides the basis for greater harmonisation of different sectors and public policy frameworks, resulting in more efficient use of resources and mutual gains between different sectors. A set of ten core principles are drawn from the shared experience of different sectors subject to extreme events that can be used by the private sector and civil society to promote resilient systems. The presentation compares the use of these ten principles by both communities in Sudan and businesses in South-East Asia who both successfully managed the impacts of extreme flooding events.

Building Resilient Business


Global Head of Technical Center Business Resilience, Zurich Insurance Company Ltd, Switzerland

Companies, like communities, are increasingly exposed to risks linked to globalisation issues, underlining the connectivity of disaster drivers. In response, there is shift in focus for business risk management from protecting business assets, business continuity and damage analysis to the protection of value creation and building resilient business. The process of analysing risk and putting in place resilience-building measures for business shares many similarities with the process followed by civil society organisation for building resilience in communities. A coherent methodology and indicators to measure and analyse risk is used that allows comparison between different businesses in different risk contexts. Here, the different elements of the business system including suppliers, sourcing/production/distribution of products, and clients are analysed in terms of exposure to risk and the value of the business at risk where a disaster occurs. The different components of the business are analysed in terms of their resilience to potential risks, with a set of resilience measures proposed for the business system that acts to prepare, mitigate or accept risk. Globalisation and its impact on exposure to hazards is forcing business to rethink the issues threatening the value of their own business, and to consider risk management solutions that look more widely at the systems that impact on their business.

Private sector-civil society partnership opportunities for resilience building


Disaster Risk Management Consultant, France

There is a strong historical background of the private sector working with local communities and civil society groups in response to major disasters across all continents. However, all parties increasingly recognise the need to engage in more organised and strategic partnerships over a longer time period between increasingly cyclical disaster events. This is done in order to maximise and protect investments in communities and business, and to more effectively use resources to build the resilience of community and business systems to disaster. There are increasing efforts to link the private sector and civil society at regional and national levels across different sectors, recognising the professionalism, economic modelling and management, research and resources of the private sector coupled with the demonstrated impact, understanding and operational capacity of civil society at the local level.

Building resilience for communities means protecting, strengthening and diversifying how people manage their livelihoods. For this to work, this means coordinated action across multiple sectors involving partnerships between communities, civil society, private sector and the government. In particular, there are opportunities and examples for partnerships that analyse and forecast risk; for social protection (transfer of cash or resources), the use of financial services, and of offsetting risk with microinsurance; reinforcing value chains/logistics, infrastructure and services (construction, water and sanitation, shelter and provision of food); logistics; conventional and alternative energy; telecommunications and marketing; and, human resources training and management. Partnerships between the private sector and civil society can be harnessed via bilateral partnerships, consortia and specific platforms (or coordination groups) from the local to the global level.

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