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Second Regional Forum on DRR in Higher Education

Recognizing the important role higher education institutions have in the disaster preparedness, response, and recovery potential of Latin America and Caribbean countries, USAID/OFDA and the U.N. International Strategy for Disaster Reduction are sponsoring the Second Latin American Regional Forum on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in Higher Education, organized the Latin American and Caribbean University Network for Disaster Risk Reduction (REDULAC). The forum will be held in Bogotá, Colombia, from November 24 to 26. An estimated 160 participants from 20 countries are expected to attend, including members of REDULAC national chapters, U.S. and regional university authorities, national emergency system representatives, and international organizations such as the Red Cross.

As with the first forum, held in Panama City, Panama, in August 2012, DRR experts and university professors will present on research experiences and lessons learned during the incorporation of DRR into higher education institutions and study plans, including careers, social action, educational outreach, and community DRR activities. Group discussions will follow daily panels involving subject experts, allowing participants to explore specific disaster management and risk reduction themes in greater depth and form communities of practice within the university networks.

The three-day event will be broadcast live via Internet in both English and Spanish and an anticipated 1,500 or more viewers will have the opportunity to engage in simultaneous question-and-answer sessions with forum participants. At least 35 universities and other institutions of higher learning, as well as numerous emergency response agencies, participated in the 2012 virtual forum, expanding the reach of the event tenfold.  

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