Conference Commits to Steps for an Int'l. DR and Reconstruction Framework

More than 3,000 delegates recently attended the first-ever World Reconstruction Conference, including representatives of governments, international agencies and institutions, regional bodies, civil society, the private sector, scientists and academics. The event took place in Geneva, Switzerland, and saw more than 100 leading experts from 30 countries and 80 institutions provide state-of-the-art, high-level policy sessions on every aspect of disaster recovery and reconstruction. The gathering concluded with an agreement to move forward with a framework for international cooperation in post-disaster recovery and reconstruction, a historical first.

“We know from experience that prevention pays, if done right,” said Zoubida Allaoua, director of the Finance, Economics, and Urban Development Department at the World Bank. “Timely and open access to information is key to better assessing risk and monitoring and reporting results during the recovery and reconstruction phase.”

Organized by the World Bank, the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR), and the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), the event resulted in three concrete commitments:

1. The GFDRR and the World Bank, in collaboration with partners, will lead the design of an international framework for international cooperation in post-disaster recovery and reconstruction.

2. The GFDRR partnership will lead the development of financing instruments capable of leveraging public funds through private capital markets in an effort to provide a reliable and predictable source of finance for post-disaster recovery and reconstruction.

3. The GFDRR partnership will build on its work to date to establish a global knowledge platform — “the go-to place for knowledge, expertise, and innovation for both local and global practitioners.”

“Disaster risk reduction is essential to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by protecting development investments.” said Margareta Wahlström, UN Secretary-General’s special representative for Disaster Risk Reduction.

The conference concluded that an international framework will build on existing instruments and mechanisms—including the Post-Disaster Needs Assessment—to better define roles and responsibilities, capitalize on comparative advantages of each stakeholder, and provide timely knowledge services through existing networks of practitioners.

For more information about the World Reconstruction Conference and resulting initiatives, read the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery release:

For news coverage on the event, read: