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Status of Science and Technology in Disaster Risk Reduction in Asia-Pacific 2022

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An online survey was conducted by the Asia-Pacific Scientific and Technology Advisory Group (AP-STAG) in February 2022 to assess the implementation of the S&T Roadmap in the Asia-Pacific region and it was disseminated widely in various countries. A total of 145 responses were received from governments (at the national and local level), intergovernmental organizations, the United Nations and other stakeholders. The survey results indicate significant progress in many actions included in the S&T Roadmap, but more efforts are needed to reach the levels ‘Very Good’ and ‘Great’ in the implementation of these actions. There is increased interest in Priority for Action 4 and the least interest in Priority for Action 3. Overall, Priority for Action 3 and Priority for Action 4 were identified as having made the least progress among the four Priorities for Action.

This is demonstrated by the many actions where work needs to be amplified, including, for Priority 3, in assessing the status of mainstreaming science and technology into disaster risk reduction, providing funding for science and technology in disaster risk reduction and assessing the impact of the investment of science and technology in disaster risk reduction, and, for Priority 4, in reviewing build back better indicators, addressing gaps in early warning systems and institutionalizing effective recovery and reconstruction strategies, among others.

Focusing on the outcomes, Outcome 1 (data and knowledge) of Priority for Action 4 showed significant progress while Outcome 2 (dissemination) demonstrated uniform progress in the four Priorities for Action, achieving the highest score among all the outcomes. Outcome 3 (monitoring and review) garnered the least progress, which underlines the need for more strategic focus on implementing actions while Outcome 4 (capacity building) reveal substantial achievements in Priority for Action 1 and Priority for Action 2 but less in Priority for Action 3 and Priority for Action 4.

A regional status review was also provided for seven strategic themes, including (1) Science and synergies: sustainable development, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction, (2) The Sendai Framework and science and technology, (3) Localization and inclusivity: application of science and technology at the local level, (4) Cities, climate change and critical infrastructure, (5) Science, innovation and entrepreneurship, (6) Cascading (including NATECH), compound and systemic risks, and (7) Youth and innovation. This review was conducted through the analysis of challenges and gaps, opportunities and trends, and ways forward to accelerate S&T application for disaster risk reduction in the Asia-Pacific region.

The findings of the online survey and the common issues, which were identified from the discussion around thematic areas, are summarized for consideration during the Sendai Framework Midterm Review. Recommendations are suggested for the four outcomes: data and knowledge, dissemination, monitoring and review and capacity building, and on crosscutting issues such as governance, cooperation, funding and technology and innovation.