Special Issue on Protecting Cultural Heritage and Historic Cities from Disasters
Kazuyuki Izuno and Takeyuki Okubo
Natural disasters have damaged or destroyed many invaluable cultural heritages. How to mitigate these losses, however, is difficult question. If we cannot save human lives, of course we cannot save cultural heritages from disasters. This requires more sophisticated countermeasures than conventional disaster reduction methodologies. This special issue of JDR provides many examples of such mitigation in historical cities which have expanded with cultural heritages as nuclei.
Cultural heritage disaster mitigation lies somewhere between the fields of cultural preservation and the disaster mitigation engineering. The first two review papers focus on the importance of protecting cultural heritage from natural disasters and the history of this issue from the viewpoints of both engineering and humanities.
Twelve papers discuss engineering problems and the planning of cultural heritages preservation, cover issues such as the seismic performance of traditional wooden structures, the vulnerability of historical masonry structures, disaster reduction in slope failures around cultural heritages, disaster risk analysis at historical cities, fire prevention in historical cities, and urban planning taking cultural heritage into consideration.
This issue closes with a tutorial paper showing the techniques and basics of cultural heritage disaster mitigation. It serves as a practical handbook on mitigating disasters surrounding cultural heritages and historical cities. We expect contributors to this field to increase in the near future due to the importance and urgency of cultural heritage disaster mitigation.
We thank the authors for their earnest contributions and the reviewers for their invaluable advice on improving the quality of this special issue of JDR.