University of South Carolina

Series to feature top disaster experts in North America

Some of North America’s top disaster experts will speak at the University of South Carolina in March and early April.

The series of four public lectures is organized by the Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute in the College of Arts and Sciences’ department of geography. All lectures are free and open to the public and are set for 3 – 5 p.m. in the Russell House theater.

Titled “Calamities from the Past or Portent of the Future,” the series will address a wide range of environmental hazards, risks and disasters.

The schedule is as follows:

  • March 17 -- “Mapping Flood Risk,” by Dr. David Maidment, University of Texas Austin. Maidment is the Hussein M. Althary Centennial Chair in Civil Engineering and director of UT’s Center for Research in Water Resources.
  • March 24 – “Increasing Public Preparedness for Disasters,” by Dr. Dennis Mileti, University of Colorado. Mileti is former director of the National Hazards Center in Boulder, Colo. His work on public risk communications has earned him international recognition from the World Health Organization, the International Engineering Association of Structural Safety and Reliability and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
  • March 31 – “Long-Term Strategies for Reducing Losses from Natural Disasters and Other Extreme Events,” by Dr. Howard Kunreuther, University of Pennsylvania. Kunreuther is the Cecelia Yen Koo Professor of Decision Sciences and co-director of the Risk Management and Decision Processes Center at Penn’s Wharton School. A fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, he is a member of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program’s advisory committee on earthquake hazards reduction.
  • April 7 -- “Adapting to Extreme Events and Climate Change: Entering the Period of Consequences,” by Dr. Ian Burton, University of Toronto. Burton is scientist emeritus at the Meteorological Service of Canada and a professor emeritus at Toronto. He has served as a lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessments.

USC’s Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute (HVRI) leads the nation in research using GIS technologies in the study of natural and manmade disasters. Dr. Susan Cutter, one of the world’s foremost authorities on the study of social vulnerability and disasters, directs the institute.

For more information about the HVRI, visit For more information about the lecture series, call 803-777-1699.

By Office of Media Relations

Posted: 03/17/11 @ 5:15 PM | Updated: 03/18/11 @ 4:37 PM | Permalink

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