Past Event

Roundtable Workshop 32: Using Lessons from Haiti and Chile to Reduce Global Risk

March 1, 2011

The Venable Conference Center
575 7th Street NW Washington DC 20004

In 2010, Haiti and Chile experienced devastating earthquakes. The Haitian earthquake measured about 7.0 on the Richter Scale and led to more than 200,000 deaths, 1.5 million displaced Haitians, and more than $3 billion committed to Haiti's recovery. The Chilean earthquake measured 8.8 on the Richter Scale, and led to about 500 deaths, 1.8 million affected Chileans, and about $13 million committed to Chile's recovery. The differences and the similarities between the two earthquakes present researchers, practitioners, the US Government, and the international community with tremendous learning opportunities to reduce global and US domestic risk to natural hazards. The Disasters Roundtable hosted a workshop, Using Lessons from Haiti and Chile to Reduce Global Risk, to identify, clarify, and find applications for the lessons from the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile. With contributions from Haitians, Chileans, and those from the US Government and international community, the Disasters Roundtable of the National Academies' workshop aims to illustrate how both the expected and the unexpected outcomes and occurrences in these earthquakes can better prepare the USG and the international community for the next disaster. The workshop focused on:

1. the role of pre-existing conditions in the impact, response, and recovery of these earthquake events;
2. what was learned from the expected and the unexpected outcomes of these earthquakes; and
3. how to use lessons from Haiti and Chile to reduce disaster risk in the future.

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Participants at this workshop gave presentations on a wide range of topics. Click the links below to download PDF files of those presentations.

To view the workshop's video webcast, please click here.


Chile and its Earthquake: Preparedness, Response, and Lessons, Ambassador Arturo Fermandois, Ambassador of Chile


Haiti: Lessons from the Earthquake , The Honorable Leslie Voltaire


Haiti and Chile Earthquakes, 2010, Tim Callaghan, Senior Regional Advisor LAC, USAID


Presentation, Melissa Hanlon, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Partnership Strategy & Stability Operations


The Hard Lessons of Haiti for Humanitarian Logistics, José Holguín-Veras, William H. Hart Professor, Director of the Center for Infrastructure, Transportation, and the Environment, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and Tricia Wachtendorf, Associate Professor, Associate Director, Disaster Research Center University of Delaware


Earthquake Survivability: Urban Search and Rescue Perspective, Anthony Macintyre, MD, Professor of Emergency Medicine, The George Washington University, Medical Director, Fairfax County’s Urban Search and Rescue Program


Building a Culture of Preparedness Through Public/Private Partnerships When Seconds Count, Mark Merritt, Witt & Associates


An Uncomfortable but Necessary 21st Century Task: Comparative Lesson Drawing (Haiti, Chile, and … New Zealand), Richard S. Olson, Professor and Chair, Department of Politics and International Relations, and Project Director, Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas, Florida International University, Miami, Florida


USAID in Haiti, Adam Reinhart, Agriculture/Food Security Advisor, Office of Food for Peace


State Pre- and Post-earthquake 27 F Chile, Fabiola Zamora Calderón, Carmen Paz Castro Correa, Universidad de Chile, Facultad de Arquitectura y Urbanismo, Departamento de Geografía


Statement on Lessons, Reginald DesRoches, Georgia Institute of Technology


About this Workshop, Dennis E. Wenger, National Science Foundation


Statement on Lessons, Paul Weisenfeld, USAID


Summary Powerpoint Slide