From Aceh to Tacloban: Lessons from a Decade of Disaster

Publication | May 2014

Development Asia looks at the lessons learned from a decade of dealing with natural disasters in Asia and the Pacific and at how the region’s economic growth could suffer unless it acts collectively on disaster risk.

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Natural disasters are frequent and unwelcome visitors to Asia. Nowhere else does nature’s fury strike with such frightening regularity, wiping out families, destroying homes and livelihoods, and leaving broken communities in its wake. Disasters like Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines last November, radiate lasting hardship. More than 5,000 lives were tragically lost and many more people left homeless. But jobs were also lost; businesses went bankrupt; schooling missed; and vast national economic resources diverted to the recovery effort. It can take years for communities and economies to rebuild. Reducing this toll is one of our region’s greatest challenges.

Much has been done, since the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, to integrate disaster safeguards into national economic plans. In this issue, President Benigno Aquino III of the Philippines gives his perspective on what else needs to happen to reduce risks in one of Asia’s most disaster-affected countries. And ADB President Takehiko Nakao provides exclusive insights into how the region’s economic growth could suffer unless it acts collectively on disaster risk.


  • Race against Time
  • Situation Report
  • Weblog
  • From Aceh to Tacloban
  • Taking Cover
  • Q&A: Philippines President Benigno Aquino III
  • Aid Watch
  • Opinion: ADB President Takehiko Nakao
  • Review
  • Bride Price
  • Accounting for Nature
  • Missing Links
  • Development Agenda
  • Black & White: Spoiled Earth

Additional Details

  • Climate change
  • Environment
  • Governance and public sector management
  • 1998-7528 (print)

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