Sustainable development cannot be achieved without resilient livelihoods. People around the world are increasingly exposed to natural hazards and crises – from natural disasters and disease epidemics to conflict, market shocks and protracted crises. The current global pandemic is just the latest demonstration of the importance of emergency preparedness.
Low and middle-income countries and vulnerable communities are disproportionately affected by disasters. Losses trap people in poverty and at a stroke take away development gains built by decades of hard work. But crises also provide key moments for reviewing and realigning established systems and policies.
The concept of resilience provides a useful overarching framework for reducing a wide variety of risks faced by people and communities, now and in the future. Resilience is acknowledged both explicitly and implicitly within the SDG targets, the core target being to ‘build the resilience of the poor and those in vulnerable situations and reduce their exposure and vulnerability to climate-related extreme events and other economic, social and environmental shocks and disasters’.
People with resilient livelihoods are better able to prevent and reduce the impact of disasters on their lives. As the world grapples with increasingly complex and interconnected challenges, collaborative research and innovation can help countries to create and strengthen early warning and disaster risk reduction systems and ensure that those who are the most vulnerable to disasters are more prepared.
Source: United Nations, 2018
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