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Views from the frontline: local reports of progress on implementing the Hyogo Framework for Action, with strategic recommendations for more effective implementation

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R. Nagel
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In 2009 a Voices from the Front Line (VFL) study gathered views on progress in implementing the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) on risk reduction activity at the local level across 48 countries in Africa, Asia and the Americas. In 2011 VFL carried out a second survey, and this report presents its methodology, findings, conclusions and recommendations, as well as an assessesment of where progress has or has not been made over the two-year period.The study employed the following indicators to seek views on local government as a key player in ensuring inclusion and participation within local risk governance:

there is participation by all, especially vulnerable and marginalised groups
there is gender equality in decision-making and implementation
the specific needs of children and young people are taken into account
local volunteers take part in disaster prevention measures
partnerships exist between local government, community, private sector, civil society, academia and others.

The report presents the following findings:

respondents from 58 countries felt that disaster losses had increased with only 9 countries reporting a decrease
the HFA will not achieve a substantial reduction in disaster losses by 2015 unless there is a massive scaling up of action at the local level
none of the 69 countries reported progress at the local level
48 of the 82 national governments self-reported progress on risk governance indicators in the GAR 2011.

As a result of these findings, the report makes the following recommendations:

enhance inclusion and participation through political and administrative governance reforms
tie performance reviews and incentives to results achieved in implementing partnership approaches in public policy and decentralise local risk governance systems to the local appropriate administrative level
develop local capacity and capability through nationwide periodic climate-sensitive capacity assessments
at the national level, develop DRR implementation strategies
strengthen networks and alliances at all levels and develop common local level resilience frameworks and use resource coordination mechanisms
enable greater accountability and transparency through information dissemination, legislation and regular auditing of disaster risk reduction progress
establish and use transparent complaints mechanisms, which are accessible to the general public.