CATALYST - capacity development for hazard risk reduction & adaptation
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Why, What, Where, How, Who, When


Natural hazards such as earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, tornadoes, landslides and droughts affect the lives and livelihoods of millions of people every year.

We can reduce the risk such disasters pose to life (by building earthquake resistant houses, for example) and we can improve the ways in which we respond and adapt to disasters once they occur (by learning from past mistakes and pooling insights and success stories from those who have specialist knowledge of specific hazards and regions).

Thanks to dedicated research and enlightened policies, a growing number of countries and communities have strengthened their capacities for natural hazard and disaster risk reduction and adaptation. Yet, only limited steps have been taken to integrate this knowledge into overall development, planning and environmental policies and practices.

A key challenge is to narrow the divide between researchers' and practitioners' understanding of natural hazard and disaster risk and the prevailing forces driving economic development that have made disaster risk reduction and adaptation a low priority among policy makers and development experts.


Specifically Catalyst focuses on climatic hazards (cyclones, droughts, heat waves and floods) as well as tectonic hazards (earthquakes, tsunamis, and landslides).


The project focuses on four geographic sub-regions (based on the UN Statistics sub-division of countries):

Each of these regions is characterized by a unique pattern of risk and vulnerability.

Regional Focus Central America and the Caribbean East and West Africa European Mediterranean South Asia


In order to ensure the most effective exchange of information between scientists and practitioners the CATALYST Consortium has arranged a 'Think Tank' which is essentially a series of meetings and discussions, both on a regional level and multi-regionally. There will be virtual meetings and face-to-face regional workshops as well as online discussions and this interactive website so that information can be shared, suggestions made and opinions aired. As a result of these discussions, we will compile web-based archives composed of best practices and case studies, and develop an education module. At the end of the project a handbook of policy briefs and a best practices handbook will be published.


CATALYST brings together existing networks of researchers, policy and decision makers, members of non-governmental organizations (NGOs), inter-governmental organizations, and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to identify and share information about best practices and critical knowledge gaps.


The CATALYST project was launched in October 2011 and will continue until September 2013.

Disclaimer. The results contained in this website were produced within the CATALYST project "Capacity Development for Hazard Risk Reduction and Adaptation" funded under the FP7 by the European Commission. This website is the sole responsiblity of the CATALYST Project and does not represent the opinion of the European Community nor is the European community responsible for any use that might be made of the data appearing herein.
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