Learning from Megadisasters in Japan: Sharing Lessons with the World
Mikio Ishiwatari*1,*2,, Federica Ranghieri*3, Kazushige Taniguchi*4, and Satoru Mimura*5
*1The University of Tokyo
5-1-5 Kashiwanoha, Kashiwa, Chiba 277-8561, Japan
*2Japan International Cooperation Agency, Tokyo, Japan
*3The World Bank, Washington, D.C., USA
*4Hosei University, Tokyo, Japan
*5The Pacific Regional Environment Programme, Apia, Samoa
The experience of the Great East Japan Earthquake (GEJE) can provide indispensable lessons for countries vulnerable to disasters around the world on how to strengthen their capacities to reduce disaster risks. This note assesses how the lessons from the disaster have been shared with the world by examining programs implemented by the World Bank and the Japan International Cooperation Agency. These organizations have conducted knowledge management activities, which holistically cover related sectors. The World Bank recognized that lessons from the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake had been lost from the international perspective and that ones from the GEJE needed to be collected and secured. A joint project between the World Bank and the Japanese government produced the report “Learning from megadisasters: Lessons from the Great East Japan Earthquake,” which is widely used as a reference document for the disaster. This project shared lessons with policymakers, decisionmakers, practitioners, academia, and civil society organizations through knowledge exchange programs. The Japan International Cooperation Agency invited government practitioners and experts from developing countries to visit disaster-affected areas in the Tohoku region and learn lessons from the disaster. On the 10th anniversary of the disaster, reports on recovery experiences are being produced, including this special issue. It is expected that Japan will expand its efforts to share recovery lessons with the world.
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