UR Field Lab 2019

Last month, the University of the Philippines Resilience Institute (UP RI) participated in the UR Field Lab: Chiang Mai Urban Flooding event hosted by the Understanding Risk (UR) group. The month long event took place in the International Sustainable Development Studies Institute in Chiang Mai and was held as a meeting of minds from various disciplines with the aim of integrating a diverse array of knowledge to address challenges brought about by climate change, particularly, urban flooding. This coincides with UP RI’s mission to promote disaster resilience in local communities through a transdisciplinary approach.


Adopting an un-conference format, participants were encouraged to join the working groups that they were most interested in, instead of following a set schedule of activities. This format made it easier for people to meet and collaborate with experts from different backgrounds. At the end of every week, each working group were encouraged to present and output which would then be exhibited, in its final form, in the science and art exhibit scheduled on the fourth week of the un-conference.

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UP RI was there to learn from and to contribute to the UR global community as well as to present our current efforts pertaining to building disaster resilience in the Philippines. The team worked with the Risk Communication and User-Centered Design working groups to find out new ways to improve risk communication in the Philippines through mapping, technology and art.

In particular, representatives from the UP RI worked on mapping the hydro meteorological information flow in a sample area in Chiang Mai and on improving the Southeast Asia Disaster Risk Insurance Facility (SEADRIF) website. Both of these projects had aspects which may be replicated in the Philippines in various ways.

Aside from being a venue for people from seemingly distant disciplines to work one goal together, the UR Field Lab: Chiang Mai Urban Flooding event equipped the UP RI representatives with fresh approaches and perspectives on how a transdisciplinary approach can be realized.


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