The Pacific Risk Resilience Programme (PRRP) works with Pacific island countries and their people to mainstream the risks they face from climate change and disasters into development planning and processes. Communities can become more resilient to climate change and disaster if routine government, community and other planning process take these risks into account.
The concept of risk governance is rapidly emerging in the Pacific region. Risk Governance is about ensuring the management of risk is central to development decision making by adapting the core components of governance to address disaster and climate risk. Improved risk governance will enable communities to benefit from development, whilst at the same time minimise negative consequences from climate change impacts and disasters.
A ‘development-first’ approach to managing risk
Traditionally, climate change and disaster risks have been managed as standalone activities outside development policy and practice and yet these risks are largely rooted in ‘unchecked’ development.
‘Development first’ approaches to risk management, therefore, can encourage development actors to lead ‘from within’ development itself.
This involves mainstreaming risk, including gender and social dimensions of risk, into development policy and practice.
It highlights the importance of engaging development decision makers and practitioners at all levels of governance for the management of climate change and disaster risks.
Transforming the development agenda
Mainstreaming of disaster and climate change risks should be an ongoing process rather than a one-of activity. It needs to move beyond separate climate change and disaster risk management (DRM) policies or initiatives.
Working from within development policy and practice itself is a key characteristic and at the centre of this transformative approach.