World Disasters Report 2010: Focus on urban risk

While more than 10 years old, the World Disasters Report 2010 still offers valuable insights into urban risk and has helped the IFRC to develop our work in urban resilience over the past decade.

The signs of our vulnerability to urban risk are everywhere. An earthquake can bring hospitals, schools and homes tumbling down with unspeakably tragic consequences. A volcano can throw city airports into chaos. Flood waters can turn well-kept streets into detritus-strewn canals. The drug trade can turn an inner city into a war zone. An epidemic can spread rapidly through a crowded slum.

As the pendulum of human development swings increasingly away from the countryside to the city, we see that rapid urbanization and population growth are combining to create enormous new challenges for the humanitarian community and pushing us out of our comfort zone to deal with a strange new urban world.

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