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Auckland has a third of New Zealand’s population, yet how prepared are we to respond to and recover from a major disaster? What have our structural engineers learned from Christchurch? And in what ways has the media played a crucial part in disaster response, reporting and recovery?
These are some of the questions to be tackled at The University of Auckland’s forthcoming Winter Lecture series that explores New Zealand’s disasters - the risks we face and the responses we make to those risks.
Academics from The University’s Faculties of Education, Engineering and Science will present the lectures along with Clive Manley, Auckland Civil Defence Controller, Dr Ljubica Mamula-Seadon, from The Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management, and Dr Laurie Johnson, a US expert in urban planning and disaster-related research and management.
The lunchtime series begins on 17 July with a lecture on the global perspective of disaster and democracy by Professor Saville Kushner from the Faculty of Education.
Series organiser and speaker Dr Carol Mutch, from the Faculty of Education, says the lecture series aims to share the best in disaster response and recovery research so Aucklanders can be better prepared for whatever might come their way.
“As the Canterbury earthquake images stop appearing on our television screens, it is easy to forget the size of the calamity and that some people are still in dire circumstances as they wait for decisions about their land, for new homes and workplaces to be planned and for the Christchurch city centre to be re-built.
“The fading of the immediacy of those images can also lead to complacency as people slip back into their old ways. Maybe, the magnitude 7 earthquake off the Taranaki coast recently has reminded people to reconsider how well-prepared they are.”
Event: Winter Lectures at The University of Auckland on Hazards, disasters, risk and responses: Auckland, are you ready?
Dates: Six successive Tuesdays from 17 July to 21 August
Venue: Maidment Theatre, 8 Alfred Street. Free admission.
For further information visit: www.auckland.ac.nz/winter