Disaster risk reduction and protracted violent conflict
The case of Afghanistan
While technical experts and donors profess an ambition to adapt conventional disaster risk reduction (DRR) approaches to conflict contexts, they struggle to overcome the long-held perception that this is not a viable option. Conflict can undermine national disaster risk governance and the implementation of DRR strategies, and conflict contexts are often considered too difficult an environment in which to deliver DRR. In such conditions, disaster risk management is likely to be a low government priority, with action limited to protection and response. Afghanistan presents a contrasting picture, where a national strategy has been formulated and includes explicit consideration of the conflict environment, and where some local DRR interventions are linking with conflict prevention ambitions. Afghanistan has been beset by numerous disasters in recent years, with a high toll of death and displacement. Thousands have been injured, killed or forced to flee their homes as a result of the country’s longstanding conflict. DRR has become a major concern for international donors and the Afghan government over the past decade. This study explores how DRR initiatives and projects are being linked with conflict prevention, ‘do no harm’ principles and peacebuilding efforts to show that it is possible to mitigate against natural hazards, while also seeking to reduce the risk of conflict. The study also strikes a note of caution that, while DRR is possible, it requires long-term, dedicated effort and continuous monitoring. Of particular concern is the scope of current DRR projects, as the tailored approaches required in remote disaster-prone communities do not easily allow for scaling up.
|Note||This report is part of the project ‘When disasters and conflict collide: uncovering the truth’, a collaboration between the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the Overseas Development Institute (ODI). It also draws on research conducted for the project ‘When disaster meets conflict’ from the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), Erasmus University Rotterdam, funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), VICI grant 453-14-013.|
Mena Fluhmann, R.A, Hilhorst, D.J.M, & Peters, K. (2019, September). Disaster risk reduction and protracted violent conflict. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/120072
|available online project information "When disasters and conflict collide"|