International Graduate Summer Course of 2011

This course was held during 30 May to 18 June 2011 at the EERC in Selfoss, Iceland. The course was attended by people from Canada, Denmark, France, Netherlands, Saudi Arabia and the United States. The participants, who were of diverse backgrounds such as engineering, sociology, geology, environmental management, environmental sciences, geophysics, etc., consisted mostly of masters and doctoral students that all came together and studied natural disaster management with us here in Iceland.

Course Outline

The course was held in the wake of large scale earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, glacial bursts, flooding and glacier retreat in South Iceland, providing a perfect full-scale laboratory for studies of natural hazards and how they threaten communities. Part of the course was to evaluate actual risks and learn from community members how to face such risks and how to deal with the consequences.

Course Goal and Objectives

The course goal was for students to gain an overview of natural hazards, community impact and disaster management and skills to conduct basic risk assessments and provide input into disaster response action planning.

The key objectives for the students were to have an understanding of:

  • The disaster management cycle and associated stakeholders
  • Natural processes and natural hazards
  • Disaster risk
  • Disaster response
  • Have the ability to:
  • Explain the elements of risk management and associated coordination procedures
  • Identify appropriate information for risk assessments
  • Measure and map natural hazards
  • Outline the basic principles of planning and design of built-up areas and critical infrastructures in hazard prone areas.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in simulated real-time risk analysis