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Disaster Readiness Center joins Earth Institute
Date:8/1/2013

The National Center for Disaster Preparedness, a research, policy and education institution that has worked for the past decade across the United States to strengthen responses to extreme weather, terrorism and other threats, has joined Columbia University's Earth Institute.

Previously based at Columbia's Mailman School of Public Health, the center will expand its focus internationally, working with the Earth Institute's 27 other centers and affiliates to deploy advances in earth sciences, sociology, environmental sustainability and other fields to prepare societies for a wide spectrum of disasters.

"Climate change, social inequities, emerging biological hazards and infrastructure fragility pose enormous, urgent and global disaster risks," said Dr. Irwin Redlener, the center's director. "Integrating into the wide community of scientists at the Earth Institute will enable new and powerful ways of addressing those challenges."

The National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP) was established in 2003. Its research has included tracking the health and recovery of people affected by the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, as well as the effects of Hurricane Katrina and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Its studies have explored U.S. attitudes toward disaster preparedness, and tested new strategies for communicating with high-risk and vulnerable populations. It has trained more than 100,000 health and public-health practitioners to deal with emerging events, with a special emphasis on protecting children. Its 20 affiliated faculty represent a wide range of academic disciplines and university departments. Senior members will retain their appointments at the Mailman School.

Redlener, a pediatrician, is an expert on disaster policy, pandemic influenza and natural disasters. He is the author of the 2006 book Americans at Risk: Why We Are Not Prepared for Megadisasters and What We Can Do Now, and he
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Contact: Kevin Krajick
kkrajick@ei.columbia.edu
212-854-9729
The Earth Institute at Columbia University
Source:Eurekalert

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