AFAC14 Research Forum opened successfully in Wellington

AFAC14 - conference opening, Wellington (Photo: BNH CRC)
AFAC14 – conference opening, Wellington (Photo: BNH CRC)

Reflecting a growing interest in all hazards research, the demand for places has exceeded supply of seats for the Research Forum, the first day of the AFAC2014 dedicated to presentations and discussion on the latest scientific projects for bushfire and natural hazards. The AFAC14 conference addressing the theme After Disaster Strikes, Learning from Adversity was held from 2-5 September in New Zealand.

About 390 emergency managers and scientists discussed the range of all hazards research underway, along with findings from the previous Bushfire CRC on the first day of the conference week. More BNHCRC researchers were speakers on the main conference program, complemented by agency and industry speakers. Professor David Johnston, Director of the Joint Centre for Disaster Research, GNS Science and Massey Univerity, New Zealand and IRDR Science Committee Chair served as a keynote speaker of the event.

In total, the week received almost 100 presentations, along with five personal development programs and four field trips. CRC researchers and PhD students also developed an impressive display of more than 60 research posters with topics ranging from flood management, community resilience, children in disasters, predictions and forecasts for extreme weather conditions, among others.

Breaking away from tradition at AFAC14, this year’s conference dinner was held at the Te Papa Museum, New Zealand’s national museum, which was opened only to conference delegates and with a roaming dinner served at different exhibitions.

The BNHCRC and AFAC stand located in the entrance foyer also featured mini documentary video that was developed as part of the Bushfire CRC Research To Drive Change online forum series on a specially designed display. Copies of the new publication – a comprehensive document of the achievements of the Bushfire CRC from 2010-2014 – was available for everyone.

The Bushfire & Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre (BNH CRC) is one of the National Committees of IRDR. IRDR National Committees (NCs) support and supplement IRDR’s research initiatives, and help to establish or further develop crucial links between national disaster risk reduction programmes and activities within an international framework.