Committees and Working Groups
UCLG Taskforce for Territorial prevention and management of crisis

Local Government Disaster Response

Presidency: City of Geneva
Vice-presidency: Union of Turkish Municipalities
Contact: Simoné Giovetti 
Secretariat: Cités Unies France;
Founding Members: CUF, UMT, VNG, FMC, Métropolis, UCLG MEWA and UCLG ASPAC

Background Information

Debate and support the preparation of UCLG policies in the field of local government disaster management Local government disaster management policy is not new to UCLG. Due to the Tsunami in South East Asia in 2004 were put forward in governing bodies of UCLG.

In April 2008, the “Local Action for Disaster Risk Reduction” Programme was launched by UCLG in partnership with ICLEI, Metropolis and CITYNET and with the technical support of the Earthquakes and Megacities Initiative (EMI). This initiative was created with the approval of the United Nations Secretariat for the implementation of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN-ISDR). The objective of the Programme, which has been running since, is to promote the adoption by local and regional governments of risk reduction policies and to promote their participation in the United Nations Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction, which was launched in 2007.

When disasters strike, local governments are the first line of response, often with wide ranging responsibilities but insufficient capacities to deal with them. Local governments are equally on the front line when it comes to anticipating, managing and reducing disaster risk, setting up or acting on early warning systems. International disaster response efforts often lack a local governance dimension addressing specific needs of local governments.

Members of United Cities and Local Governments have historically launched solidarity missions to crisis areas. They are convinced that this area of work should be developed under UCLG flag and in cooperation with strategic international partners. In order to improve the position and the action of local governments in the face of disaster and those dealing with the consequences of disaster, it has been proposed that a Task Force on local government disaster response is to be created under DCCD (Development Cooperation and City Diplomacy Committee). Initially made up of representatives of VNG, FCM, CUF and UMT, the city of Istanbul and UCLG MEWA, this body will help to stimulate debate, legitimize joint initiatives and engage new actors.

The Taskforce will provide a platform for local governments, to exchange knowledge and expertise on disaster management. It will improve and increase the availability of local governments expertise to disaster-affected municipalities and it will highlight and develop the role of local governments on the international disaster management, resilience and response.

The UCLG Taskforce for prevention and territorial management of crisiswill incorporate the following aspects:

  • Debate and support the preparation of UCLG policies in the field of local government disaster management;
  • Discuss and validate quality standards and other collective approaches that are being prepared as part of joint Programs;
  • Maintain / increase the capacity of UCLG members to technically mobilize for a disaster.
  • Discuss / prepare opinions in relation to decision making / initiatives of UN agencies in the field;
  • Share approaches, tools, methodologies and knowledge on program development (for example: approaches, proposal templates, guiding principles, criteria for identification and selection of new program areas, etc.);
  • Discuss new programming opportunities and exchange on strategies to assess and seize these opportunities;