The experience of the COVID-19 pandemic opened our eyes to the complexity and challenges in providing effective humanitarian assistance under conditions with compound hazards. How should we strengthen our response capacity as part of disaster preparedness and risk reduction? This session invites the speakers who have vast experience in humanitarian assistance, policy framework, and research.
8am (Geneva), 2pm (Bangkok/Jakarta), 3pm (Hong Kong/Kuala Lumpur/Manila),
4pm (Tokyo), 6pm (Sydney), or 8pm(Auckland)
Duration: 90 minutes
Oliver Lacey-Hall is an independent humanitarian and development adviser. Current assignments include (i) a lead adviser role for the Australia/Indonesia Partnership on Disaster Risk Management’s SIAP SIAGA program, with a focus on supporting improved disaster management in the Asia and Pacific regions, (ii) practitioner partner with the University of Virginia’s Humanitarian Collaborative working on Early Childhood Development in Emergencies and (iii) senior adviser on communications and partnerships for the Sunway Centre for Planetary Health at Sunway University, Malaysia.
Oliver was previously Director of the UK’s Humanitarian and Stabilisation Operations Team (HSOT), leading provision of humanitarian and stabilisation services to the UK Government by the Palladium Group.
With the United Nations he served with the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) heading its regional office for Asia and the Pacific and subsequently as senior liaison officer with the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and head of the Indonesia office between 2011 and 2018.
Previous positions include deputy director of OCHA’s Communications and Information Services Branch in New York, manager of the UN Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) Team for Asia Pacific, oversight of OCHA’s global information management team and initial development of OCHA’s surge capacity mechanisms as well as broad field experience in humanitarian coordination and disaster and crisis response in Armenia, China, Croatia, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Indonesia, Iraq, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Viet Nam, serving with the Palladium Group, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the UN Development Programme, the European Union’s humanitarian office, the Government of the United Kingdom, and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
Oliver holds a master’s degree in Gender Analysis and Development from the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom.
Jessica Alexander is currently the Policy Editor at The New Humanitarian. Her career as a humanitarian aid professional has included experience in operations, evaluation and policy with global deployments spanning Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.
Jessica is two-time Fulbright grantee who received the award to research Japan’s approach to disaster risk reduction in 2019 and the use of child soldiers in Sierra Leone in 2006. She received a Master of Public Health and a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University. She teaches humanitarian affairs and accountability at numerous global universities. She has authored policy papers and mainstream articles about the humanitarian sector and is the author of “Chasing Chaos: My Decade In and Out of Humanitarian Aid.”
Prof. Miwa Hirono is an associate professor/ associate dean at RitsumeikanUniversity.
Until she joined Ritsumeikan University in 2015, she held a Research Councils UK (RCUK) Research Fellowship, and Deputy Directorship at the Institute of Asia and Pacific Studies, at the University of Nottingham. Her publication includes China’s Evolving Approach to Peacekeeping (London: Routledge 2012), Civilizing Missions: International Christian Agencies in China (New York: Palgrave MacMillan 2008), and Cultures of Humanitarianism: Perspectives from the Asia-Pacific (Canberra: Australian National University 2012).
She has taught at the Australian National University, where she was awarded a Ph.D. in International Relations, the University of Cambridge, and the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. She was a Visiting Fellow at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard Kennedy School on Fulbright Fellowship (2018-2019), at the Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (2003-2004) and at Beijing University (2003-2004; 2009).
Dr. Takako Izumi is an associate professor at the International Research Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS), Tohoku University, Japan since 2013. She also serves as Program Director of the Multi Hazards Program under the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU), which comprises 55 universities and academic institutes in the Pacific Rim. Her research interests include international and regional frameworks/strategies for disaster risk reduction (DRR), international humanitarian assistance, and DRR initiatives at the local and community levels.
Prior to joining academia, she has more than 15-year experience as a practitioner in humanitarian assistance, disaster response, recovery, risk reduction as well as various development issues with an international NGO and UN agencies such as UN Habitat, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), UN Office for the Recovery Coordinator for Aceh and Nias (UNORC), and UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (Current UNDRR).
She has been appointed as a member of the UNDRR’s Asia-Pacific Science Technology and Academia Advisory Group (ASTAAG) since May 2015. She holds Ph.D. in Global Environmental Study from Kyoto University, Japan.