NASC Discussion Series 29

Theme: Disaster Governance in Nepal: Policy, Practice and Challenges

Speaker: Dr. Chandra Lal Pandey

Date: 13 Srawan 2073 (28 July 2016)

Venue: Khaptad Hall, Dikshya Sadan, NASC

Nepal, located along the Himalayan Arc, is highly vulnerable to earthquakes, landslides, floods, glacial lake outburst floods and climate change. Traditionally, disasters were managed on an ad-hoc basis as and when they occurred. Since the introduction of the Natural Calamity Relief Act (1982), it moved from ad hoc practices to institutional practices. The Act made Ministry of Home Affairs the key authority for the formulation of national policies and their implementation; preparedness and mitigation activities; immediate rescue and relief work; data collection and dissemination; and the distribution of disaster relief funds. In 1999 Local Self-Governance Act became effective for devolution of responsibility to lower levels of the politico-administrative hierarchy without any guidance or specific funds. A few other important disaster related acts, policies and strategies (2009, 2013, 2014) have been formulated, institutionalized and being practiced to respond to the disasters. Yet, the post-earthquake disaster management response 2015 case study demonstrates that existing laws and policies need further revisions to avoid institutional discrepancies, overlapping and timely response. In this discussion series, Dr. Pandey will highlight about major disaster policies of Nepal, praxis case study of post-earthquake 2015 and challenges for improved disaster risk reduction and response in the future.

Dr. Chandra Lal Pandey is a Senior Research Fellow at Southasia Institute of Advanced Studies and Academic & Research Director at the Institute of Crisis Management Studies, Dhumbarahi affiliated to Tribhuvan University. He is also a Visiting Professor in School of Education, Kathmandu University, and International Relations and Diplomacy Program, Tribhuvan University.  He was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Waikato, New Zealand from where he had also earned a PhD in Political Science and Public Policy. Prior to his PhD. studies, he was a Research Fellow at Hanshin University, South Korea, and a Lecturer at Thapathali Engineering Campus, Tribhuvan University Nepal. His research expertise and interests include environmental politics/policy; climate change governance/adaptation and REDD Plus; resource politics, sustainable development studies; crisis and disaster management; human security   and all emerging issues of non-traditional security studies. He has long been working on environmental affairs and developmental issues in South Asia. He has co-edited the book Environmental Security in the Asia-Pacific published in June 2015 by Palgrave Macmillan in the United States of America. His co-authored the book Why REDD will fail and published it in February 2016 by Taylor and Francis, Routledge studies in Environmental Policy.  He has also published several research articles in a number of leading international journals. He has recently written two reports on disaster governance: ‘Strengthening Legal Preparedness for International Disaster Response in Nepal’ & ‘Post-earthquake Disaster Governance in Nepal: Reflections from Practice and Policy’.