Institute of Crisis Management Studies in collaboration with the COMRADES project completed a highly successful international 2-days workshop supported by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020 Scheme. The Collective Awareness Platforms for Sustainability and Social Innovation for making Crises Resilient Community, or “COMRADES” workshop was jointly organized by Institute of Crises Management Studies in collaboration with the Open University, U.K., the University of Agder, Sheffield University, Ushahidi, and Government To You. Distinguished guests included Right Honorable Prime Minister Puspa Kamal Dahal Prashanda, Honorable Members of Parliament, respected representatives of the diplomatic community, and distinguished participants from intergovernmental and non governmental organizations. The workshop was concluded by the Honorable Minister of Industry Nabindra Raj Joshi.
The workshop provided a forum for exchanging knowledge about the role of information in disasters. Attendess presented current and ongoing research, cases studies from the field, and examined current research trends and methods. The workshop helped to increase networks of governmental officials, academic researchers, and members of the international community who share commitment to building resilience to disasters and specifically empowering local communities through information exchange. A unique aspect of the workshop was the inclusion of a wide variety of stakeholders from all political parties, representatives from front-line non governmental organizations, and ICMS students who represent the future of Nepal. Chair of the Institute Dr. Ram Thapaliya, who coordinated the event for the Institute of Crisis Management Studies was delighted to welcome Drs. Kenny Meesters and Shadrock Roberts, who are leading the COMRADES research in Nepal. They said the workshop exceeded all expectations, “It is an incredible experience to be talking with decision makers from the highest levels of government; local NGO staff who work tirelessly everyday to build resilience in the field; and the bright and inquiring minds of the ICMS students all in the same room.” The workshop will produce a report published in an international journal accessible worldwide. The project will also result in web-based, open source information platform that will be available to all the stakeholders. Finally, the workshop serves as starting point for the wide range of attending stakeholders to further explore the role of information management practices and technologies to further enhance community drive resilience building.