Workshop on Managing Risks of Natural Hazards:

Reducing the risk of natural disasters, and supporting risk sharing and risk transfer arrangements…


In order to prepare for the First Inter-American Ministerial Meeting on Sustainable Development, to be held in Bolivia in December 4-5, 2006, the Department of Sustainable Development organized the Managing Risks of Natural Hazards workshop in Jamaica in April 18-19, 2006.  As agreed upon by member states of the OAS at the 1996 Santa Cruz Summit on Sustainable Development and confirmed in the Americas Summit in Mar del Plata (2005), this workshop sought to consolidate expert knowledge to generate policies, national strategy, action plans and programs for risk reduction of disasters, and to develop institutional skills in risk reduction of disasters across the hemisphere. The purpose of this was to move forward in both mitigation and transference of risks.

The objective of the small, informal workshop of experts was to highlight priority areas in relation to reducing the risks of natural disasters.  A particular focus of the workshop was the identification of partnerships at the regional and sub-regional levels, including identifying specific priorities, gaps and opportunities in capacity building, information exchange and technical cooperation in relation to risk reduction.  Given the overarching focus of the OAS Ministerial meeting will be sustainable development, a key priority entailed the identification of options to mainstream risk reduction measures into sector-specific planning, as well as cross-cutting fiscal, developmental and economic planning approaches.

Given the need to integrate risk reduction measures into specific sectors, the workshop examined a limited number of sectors within which risk reduction efforts are underway.  These included the tourism, agriculture, and water management infrastructure.  The workshop examined how best practices in sector-specific risk mitigation could be extrapolated into other sectors.

Finally, the workshop recommended opportunities for collaboration among OAS member states in the area of risk reduction in order to enhance the exchange of information and related coordination among different regional organizations, such as the recently-launched Comprehensive Disaster Management plan under CDERA and other examples from North, Central, and South America.


Latest New


Final report 


Summary of the natural disasters workshop report



Workshop brief


Workshop Agenda


Background Papers:


The economics of disaster Natural mitigation in the Caribbean.


Policy brief: The economics of disaster mitigation in the Caribbean document.


World Conference on Disaster Reduction Kobe, Hyogo, Japan, 2005: Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015: Building the resilience of nations and communities to disasters

Contact us

Pedro Bastidas

Department of Sustainable Development

Organization of American States

1889 F. St., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20006
Ph: +(202) 458-6295
Fax: +(202) 458-3560




This page was last updated on Monday February 25, 2008.