A new International Centre of Excellence in Community Resilience was launched today in Wellington.   
 
The centre is a joint initiative between the Joint Centre for Disaster Research – funded by Massey University and GNS Science - and the Wellington Region Emergency Management Office (WREMO), established in 2012 to provide a more collaborative approach to Emergency Management.
 
“By bringing together emergency management science, experiences and learnings into one shared knowledge hub we can lift the resilience of the greater Wellington region and better prepare communities for the impact of future disasters,” says Group Chair, Nick Leggett.
 
“The new International Centre of Excellence in Community Resilience will provide cutting edge research into community resilience and will be a leader in the implementation of such research into practice to better equip our communities against major events.
 
Bruce Pepperell, WREMO’s manager states that this is an exciting development. “The centre will also allow us to forge further international collaborations for knowledge exchange that will help improve Wellington’s and New Zealand’s resilience to future disasters.”
 
The core objectives of the International Centre of Excellence in Community Resilience are:
  • To provide an evidence base for WREMO’s Community Resilience Strategy
  • To create networks that share international good practice in community resilience
  • To promote the Wellington region as a living laboratory for research and learning.
Joint Centre for Disaster Research director and professor of disaster management David Johnston says the new centre will enable regional, national and international scientific communities to collaborate and share research to build a foundation of knowledge and better understand the problems that need to be solved.
 
“The recent earthquakes in Seddon and Eketahuna and the seismic activity that is currently occurring in New Zealand have highlighted the need to boost the resilience of our communities. The new centre will ensure that we are making decisions from the latest science-based models, methods and metrics ensure people are getting the best protection and survival advice possible.
 
“It will also link us in with the Integrated Research on Disaster Risk programme, which is a United Nations endorsed initiative to mitigate the impacts of natural disasters by improving the policy and decision making mechanisms.
 
“By being a part of an international network of like-minded scientists and researchers we can drastically expand our knowledge of disasters and the measures needed to protect communities from them.”
 
For more information on the International Centre of Excellence in Community Resilience visit www.getprepared.co.nz and for general information of an informative nature before, during, and after an emergency, www.facebook.com/WREMOnz 
 
Released: 3 March 2014