July 26, 2016
We begin our workshop tomorrow. In preparation, we were invited to meet with the Rector and Vice Rectors of Khairun University. The setting was stunning, delightful for the beauty of landscapes, but also reminders of the potential hazards.
Khairun’s expanded role as a state university in the past decade has made it a hub for Eastern Indonesia. We discussed the role of the newly established Disaster Research Center (PSB) at Khairun University and the Rector proudly shared the early impacts of the Center across different programs. In the Indonesia state university system undergraduate students are required to conduct a field study component in local communities. These students have been working in cities, towns, and villages — with schools and other community organizations — communicating the importance of disaster risk reduction.
The Disaster Research Center has also worked with different districts on conducting vulnerability assessments, mapping out risks and jointly supporting planning efforts.
We are looking forward to getting started with the workshop tomorrow:
The attendance was originally targeted to increasing the capacity of local universities in order to develop curriculum and supporting planning efforts. However, to build multi-stakeholder forums, Khairun’s Disaster Research Center has decided to reach out to other types of organizations. Four different universities make up the core group of attendees, but representatives from local government disaster management agencies, planning agencies, and NGOs also plan to attend. Nearby provinces will also send attendees to expand the disaster network and begin similar initiatives across Eastern Indonesia. Representatives from the provinces for Maluku and West Papua will also be in attendance.
A unique feature of the workshop involves field visits to four different villages, which we look forward to reporting in the coming days.