Disaster Management

Residents walk on a road littered with debris after Super Typhoon Haiyan battered Tacloban city in central Philippines. 

Purpose-Built Financing for Disaster-Risk Management

April 19, 2023

Blog Post

Asian and Pacific nations need a big boost in spending to manage the growing risk of natural disasters, but several low- and middle-income countries will need help to meet these targets.


Still Recovering from the Earthquake, Nepal Faces Covid-19

April 15, 2020

Blog Post

The Covid-19 crisis may feel familiar to Nepalis. Just five years ago, Nepal was reeling from another disaster that destroyed critical infrastructure and cut people off from vital goods and services.


#Palukuat (Palu is Strong)

October 10, 2018

Blog Post

It was towards dusk on Saturday, September 28. At 6:02, four minutes after her father had picked her up from work, there were loud explosions. The world would later learn that a magnitude 7.4 earthquake had struck Palu, in Sulawesi, Indonesia, followed by a tsunami. For Yuni Amalia and her father, the explosions had no name. All they knew was their… Read more


In Vietnam: Assessing City Resilience

September 26, 2018

Blog Post

The violent storms that swept over the Philippines, China, and the southeastern U.S. seaboard earlier this month were a harrowing preview of extreme weather events that are likely to become more common as the 21st century unfolds. Cities in the paths of the storms lost power, water, and communications. Transportation networks were blocked. Homes an… Read more


The Vietnam City Resilience Index

August 8, 2018


Proof of Concept Report This ground-breaking report is the first effort globally to undertake comparative assessment of city resilience across a large cohort of cities within a single country. It provides a comprehensive view of strengths and weaknesses across 12 core areas and a number of subindicators, and can be used by government agencies, inte… Read more


The Asia Foundation Hosts Panel on Disaster Waste at the 2018 Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction

Ulaanbaatar, July 12, 2018

News Post

The Asia Foundation recently participated in the Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction. On July 3rd, the Government of Mongolia opened the three-day conference which was attended by over 3,000 participants including over 50 countries and 1,500 organizations. The conference, held every two years, is an organized collaboration… Read more

Sichuan earthquake relief 

10 Years after Wenchuan Earthquake, A Silver Lining in Disaster Management

May 9, 2018

Blog Post

On May 12, China will mark the 10th anniversary of the devastating Wenchuan earthquake that struck Sichuan province, leaving more than 69,000 people dead and over 40 million affected. While the impact of the earthquake lasts today, the one silver lining is that the catastrophe has catalyzed improvements to China’s disaster management architecture…. Read more


Funding the Front Liners: New Disaster Fund Rules to Help Local Governments

August 2, 2017


On March 14, 2017, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council approved new rules administering the use of the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Fund. The new Rules represent the culmination of a Coalitions for Change (CfC) effort that began in June 2015 under the Partnership of the Australian Government and The Asia Found… Read more


Disaster Preparedness and Response During Political Transition in Nepal

April 24, 2017


Using the 2015 earthquake response as a case study, this policy brief highlights the key factors that affected coordination between security-related agencies and the civilian agencies of the Government of Nepal, and identifies potential ways to improve future disaster responses. The paper also looks at ways that international organizations can supp… Read more

China response team in Haiti 

Beyond Borders: China’s NGOs Respond to World’s Natural Disasters

October 26, 2016

Blog Post

This week, over 30 representatives from leading Chinese foundations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are gathered in Beijing for an intensive workshop delivered by experts from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on the international humanitarian system. The session is aimed at crafting a better un… Read more


4 Things to Know About Post-Earthquake Aid and Recovery in Nepal

October 5, 2016

Blog Post

A year and a half after a series of major earthquakes struck Nepal, causing widespread devastation and killing nearly 9,000 people, the pace of reconstruction remains painfully slow. One month ago, the prime minister announced an additional $1,000 in relief per household, which would raise the total resources available to each affected household to… Read more

Alibaba HQ 

Inaugural XIN Philanthropy Conference an Inspiration

July 13, 2016

Blog Post

Jack Ma and the Alibaba Foundation – the charitable arm of Alibaba Group – hosted a first-of-its-kind philanthropy conference in Hangzhou, China, this past week: the Xin Philanthropy Conference. Their goal? To establish credibility as major advocates for the deeper development of a culture of private philanthropy in China. Alibaba hosted the first-… Read more


Tracking Conditions on the Ground in Post-Earthquake Nepal

June 1, 2016

Blog Post

The impacts of the devastating earthquakes that struck Nepal in April and May of 2015 are still being felt by thousands of families in affected districts. It has been, and will continue to be, a significant challenge for Nepal to fully recover. In order to plan and implement effective responses, up-to-date and accurate information from the field wi… Read more


One Year After Nepal Earthquake, a Nation Still Struggling to Recover

April 20, 2016

Blog Post

On April 25, 2015, a 7.8 earthquake hit Nepal, followed by an even more devastating quake two weeks later resulting in almost 9,000 deaths, 8 million people affected, and vast swaths of the nation in rubble including the capital, Kathmandu. Now one year on, hundreds of aftershocks are still ongoing and the nation is still struggling to recover. On… Read more


Aid and Recovery in Post-Earthquake Nepal

October 28, 2015

Blog Post

On Monday, a 7.5-magnitude earthquake hit South Asia, its epicenter in northeastern Afghanistan, devastating many areas, killing hundreds and injuring thousands. Just six months ago, on April 25, in similarly difficult and remote terrain, a 7.8-magnitude quake struck Nepal.


U.S.-China Cooperation on Disaster Management Training

September 23, 2015

Blog Post

Two-man search teams enter a darkened classroom to look for survivors. They work in pairs, systematically exploring the jumble of overturned desks and chairs. In a corner of the room, Dominic Marzano and Wilson Lee are watching closely.

A man sits for a smoke in front of green rice fields 

Nepal: The Quake and the Constitution

June 24, 2015

Blog Post

Two months have passed since Nepal was rocked by a series of devastating earthquakes. The tremors continue, but it appears that the earth is finally settling and some respite may be had – for a short while at least, until the monsoon rains bring their annual havoc of landslides and floods, which are certain to be far worse this year…


Chinese Foundations and NGOs Cross Border to Aid Nepal

June 10, 2015

Blog Post

On April 25, moments after I heard the news that a powerful earthquake had struck Nepal, colleagues from several NGOs in China, including the One Foundation and Save the Children, contacted me to discuss how to respond to this disaster next door. Using the WeChat app, our group expanded quickly. A dozen Chinese and international organizations active in disaster management in China joined the discussion.


Quake That Shook the Earth Now Shaking Nepal’s Social Fabric

May 13, 2015

Blog Post

Another powerful earthquake struck Nepal on Tuesday, collapsing hillsides and already-damaged buildings and sending panicked citizens once again running into the streets. The 7.3 magnitude quake was followed by several aftershocks, including one of magnitude 5.6 and another of 6.3. The 7.8 magnitude earthquake of April 25 had already left much of Nepal completely devastated. On May 4, the government reported that 7,365 people had died and 14,355 people had been injured.


In Nepal’s Far-Flung Villages, the Suffering Continues

May 6, 2015

Blog Post

In the remote village of Shyam Sathu in the hills of Sindhupalchok, I came upon a solitary young man in his mid-twenties – I’ll call him Arun – wrapped in a humble white garment, head shaven, and barefoot, staring into oblivion towards the high Himalayas. The village folk told me that his wife and two children had died in the earthquake. He was lost, alone, and devastated – overwhelmed by impermanence.


In Quake’s Wake, the Price of Political Disarray

April 29, 2015

Blog Post

The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Nepal on Saturday morning, April 25, and the 6.5 aftershock the following day, left frightened residents here in Kathmandu huddled in the rain in streets blocked with rubble and shaken by powerful tremors that made those structures still standing too dangerous to enter. Deaths are now estimated at over 5,500, a number that will continue to climb as emergency workers dig through collapsed buildings and push into the most affected districts of Dhading, Gorkha, Nuwakot, Rasuwa, and Sindhupalchok.


Editor’s Picks: 2014 Must Reads

December 23, 2014

Blog Post

Season’s Greetings! On behalf of In Asia’s editorial board and bloggers, we thank you for your engagement and continued readership throughout the year. We’ll be taking a short break, but will return on January 7. In the meantime, catch up on our must-read pieces and highlights on the most pressing events and issues in Asia throughout 2014.


One Year After Typhoon Haiyan, Hard-Hit Eastern Visayas Still Fragile

November 5, 2014

Blog Post

Standing at the beach of MacArthur Park just south of Tacloban city in Eastern Visayas, the Pacific Ocean looks playful and gentle – a sharp contrast from a year ago when Super Typhoon Haiyan, “Yolanda” in the Philippines, pounded the region, leaving more than 6,300 dead…


One Year After Bohol Earthquake, Partnerships Thrive Amid Rehabilitation Efforts

October 15, 2014

Blog Post

One year ago today, an earthquake reported to have the energy equivalent of 32 Hiroshima bombs struck Bohol and nearby provinces in south central Philippines. Generated from a fault in the northwestern sector of Bohol Island, the earthquake registered 7.2 on the Richter scale…


Financing the Costs of Climate Change in Disaster-Prone Asian Nations

September 17, 2014

Blog Post

Disaster insurance has quickly risen up the global policy agenda in the last few years, where phrases like “loss and damage mechanisms” and “micro-insurance schemes” are catching fire in climate change discussions about how to finance the costs…


Emerging Chinese Foundations Expand Role in Disaster Management

September 17, 2014

Blog Post

Last month, the One Foundation, one of China’s most visible charitable organizations, presented a new strategy to government officials and national researchers that marks a major shift in the approach to disaster mitigation in the country.


Engaging Asia’s Private Sector in Disaster Risk Management

September 17, 2014

Blog Post

Heavy monsoon rains in Pakistan and India since early September have resulted in some of the worst flooding in decades, requiring immediate relief response, as hundreds of people have already lost their lives and millions more are affected.


A Conversation with Chinese Fellow, Environmental NGO Leader Lican Liu

September 17, 2014

Blog Post

In Asia editor Alma Freeman recently interviewed co-founder and Director of Programs and Communications at the Greenovation Hub, a grassroots NGO that focuses on environmental protection and innovation in China.


Providing Children’s Books to A Stable but Fragile Tacloban

July 23, 2014

Blog Post

Last week, Typhoon Rammasun (Glenda in the Philippines) swept through the Philippines, killing nearly 100 people and continued on its deadly path battering China and northern Vietnam. Just 24 hours after Glenda hit the Philippines, I visited Tacloban…


Obama’s Trip to the Philippines: A Touchy Last Stop

April 30, 2014

Blog Post

The last stop of U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to four Asian countries this week is perhaps the most controversial. His visit comes at a time of heightened tensions between the Philippines and China, which in recent months have demonstrated their commitment to defend their competing claims…


Survey Reveals Haiyan’s Impact on Filipino Households

April 9, 2014

Blog Post

Marilyn Ecap, a 42-year-old street typist, is a permanent fixture at the main gate of the former Divine Word University campus in Tacloban City. For 12 years she has made a living typing documents for a fee, disrupted only when Super Typhoon Yolanda…


Transboundary Pollution in Northern Thailand Causes Dangerous Levels of Smog

March 26, 2014

Blog Post

Pollution kills roughly seven million people worldwide each year, with air pollution the cause of one in eight deaths, according to the latest data from the World Health Organization released on Tuesday. Asia faces the greatest burden where the majority of the deaths occur.


Study Finds Asian Mega Dams Are Not Cost-Efficient Form of Energy

March 19, 2014

Blog Post

The International Energy Agency states that between 2010 and 2035, increased and new demand for electricity will require worldwide power generation to rise from 5.2 terawatts to 9.3 terawatts, roughly equal to adding four times the electricity that the United States currently generates. In emerging economies…


Asia Foundation’s 18 Country Reps Convene in D.C. to Discuss Asia’s Critical Issues

March 12, 2014

Blog Post

This year, The Asia Foundation is commemorating its 60th anniversary. Drawing on the expertise of local partners and our own development experts in the 18 countries where we work, we’re initiating a year-long, global conversation on six critical issues facing Asia.


Survey of Victims of Super Typhoon Haiyan Defies Preconceptions

February 5, 2014

Blog Post

It is perhaps unusual for survey research to provoke demonstrations denouncing the results, but that is precisely what happened last month when Social Weather Stations issued a survey release showing that victims of Typhoon Haiyan, “Yolanda” in the Philippines…


Philippines 2014: The Best of Times or the Worst of Times?

January 8, 2014

Blog Post

January, named after the two-faced Roman god Janus, is a time that invites us to look back and look ahead. Here in the Philippines, excitable headlines make it hard to discern if 2013 was the worst of times, or the best of times – but either way, Filipinos seem to be looking forward to 2014 with optimism.


Disaster Response Put to the Test: Lessons from Typhoon Yolanda

December 18, 2013

Blog Post

More than one month after typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan), known as the world’s biggest typhoon, struck the Philippines, authorities now estimate that over 14 million people have been affected, including four million displaced. The estimated death toll is at 6,069. The government is now on the hard road to recovery and reconstruction, allocating…


The Yolanda Tragedy: 7 Lessons in Early Emergency Response

November 20, 2013

Blog Post

Last month, when the 7.2 earthquake struck the Philippine provinces of Cebu and Bohol, I was in the southern city of Zamboanga facilitating dialogues between Muslim and Christian leaders to alleviate possible religious tension following the September siege that displaced thousands and threatened the good relationship of the city’s two faith communities. It was the furthest thing from my mind that an even more devastating disaster would happen just a month later, right in Tacloban City, where I had left my wife and kids in safety (or so I thought) and in the province of Eastern Samar where I grew up playing in the gentle edges of the mighty Pacific Ocean.


Despite Double Disasters, Bohol’s Local Response Strong

November 20, 2013

Blog Post

Less than one month after a magnitude 7.2 earthquake destroyed areas of Bohol province in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines, Typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan), said to be one of the most powerful storms ever to hit land…