The Southwest Pacific is considered one of the most vulnerable regions in the world to natural hazards. Five of the Pacific Island States (PIS) rank among the top 20 most-at risk countries in the World Risk Index, with Vanuatu and Tonga ranking first and second respectively. The Southwest Pacific neighbours Southeast Asia and both regions are exposed to a variety of natural hazards, resulting in significant damage and loss of lives annually. Similar exposure to climate-induced hazards raises the potential to create a coalition of affected states from the Asia-Pacific to share knowledge of disaster governance in areas where niche capabilities have been developed and shape the global debate on the effects of natural hazards and climate-induced disasters.
This webinar argues that inter-regional partnership on disaster governance is the next step in the Asia-Pacific to respond to a collective action problem affecting two sub-regions – Southeast Asia and the Southwest Pacific. It presents findings and observations on the disaster governance landscape and future developments in the Pacific. It then discusses disaster management frameworks and initiatives that ASEAN has institutionalised, and how work in the two sub-regions can complement one another and provide a platform to help shape the global agenda on disaster governance and climate change.
About the Speakers
Dr Alistair D. B. Cook is Coordinator of the Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Programme and Senior Fellow at the Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS Centre), S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore. His research interests focus geographically on the Asia-Pacific and Myanmar in particular and thematically on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR), foreign policy and regional cooperation.
Mr. Christopher Chen is an Associate Research Fellow at the Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS Centre), S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore.
He obtained a Master of International Relations and a Bachelor of Arts (Media & Communication and Politics & International Studies) from the University of Melbourne (UniMelb), Australia. He currently specialises in the area of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. His research interests include HADR in the Asia-Pacific; institutional memory; human rights in Asia; forced migration; politics and conflicts in the Asia-Pacific.
About the Chairperson
Mely Caballero-Anthony is Professor of International Relations and Head of the Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University. Prof. Caballero-Anthony teaches courses on non-traditional security in Asia and security governance and has served as the Secretary-General of the Consortium on Non-Traditional Security Studies in Asia since 2008. Her research interests include regionalism and multilateralism in Asia-Pacific, global governance, human security and non-traditional security, nuclear security, and conflict prevention. She is also currently board member of the Asia-Pacific Leadership Network on Nuclear Non-Proliferation (APLN). She has published extensively on a broad range of security issues in Asia-Pacific in peer-reviewed journals and international academic press. Her latest books, both single-authored and co-edited, include: Negotiating Governance on Non-Traditional Security in Southeast Asia and Beyond, An Introduction to Non-Traditional Security Studies, and Asia on the Move.