'Masters of Disaster' to study resilience in Japan

18 November 2016

UC disaster research students have been selected by the Japanese Embassy for a disaster resilience study tour of Japan in December.

'Masters of Disaster' to study resilience in Japan

Masters of Disaster Risk and Resilience students heading to Japan next month include (left to right) Kristie-Lee Thomas, Rebekah Perry and Morgan Lindsay.

University of Canterbury disaster research students have been selected by the Japanese Embassy for a disaster resilience study tour of Japan in early December.

Four UC Disaster Risk and Resilience research students have been invited by the Japanese government to attend the Japan-East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths (Jenesys) 2016 Programme in December.

Following an application and recommendation from their respective supervision teams, the UC research students were chosen, among a group of 30 students nationally, aged 18-35.

The UC research students – James Williams, Kristie-Lee Thomas, Morgan Lindsay and Rebekah Perry – are involved in disaster risk and resilience research topics, including earthquake, volcanic and tsunami risk, which have future national significance.

A Disaster Risk and Resilience PhD candidate, James Williams, Department of Geological Sciences in UC’s College of Science, has been in the field mapping tsunami impacts after the 14 November quake. He and his fellow UC disaster research students are looking forward to the opportunity to interact with local Japanese research students and develop future collaborative ties between UC and Japanese research institutes.

“Like New Zealand, Japan is still recovering from a series of major disasters, so the theme of disaster prevention and recovery is of timely significance to both countries,” Williams says.

“Japan is a world leader in disaster prevention and recovery, so the Jenesys 2016 Programme will help develop collaboration and communication between Japanese and New Zealand researchers and research students, improving international disaster prevention and recovery knowledge.”

The programme, which takes place 7 - 14 December, is organised and funded by the Japanese government and aims to develop mutual collaboration and understanding between Japan and the Asia-Pacific region, by promoting Japan’s society, culture, history and diplomatic relations.

Master of Disaster Risk and Resilience student Morgan Lindsay says she hopes to gain a lot from the tour, beyond the educational opportunities.

“The Jenesys programme will broaden my perspective and skill set when it comes to disaster risk and resilience and I hope to learn about a culture I have never experienced before and make great long-lasting connections with people from Japan as well as from around the Asia-Pacific region.”

The theme for the 2016 programme is disaster prevention and recovery and participants will have the opportunity to deepen their understanding of the topic by interacting with local people, exchanging ideas with Japanese students and visiting sites of cultural significance.

For further information please contact:
Margaret Agnew, Senior External Relations Advisor, University of Canterbury
Phone: +64 3 369 3631 | Mobile: +64 275 030 168 | margaret.agnew@canterbury.ac.nz
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