As the world sees an increase in the frequency and severity of catastrophes, developing countries are disproportionately affected. Higher rates of population growth, significant
and unplanned urban expansion as well as inadequate infrastructure to cope with this increase in exposure to disaster risk, make these countries more vulnerable and pose substantial challenges in becoming more resilient for future disasters. Meanwhile, the poor and vulnerable, measured
in terms of daily income of a few dollars or less, have few options to become more self-resilient. Governments face tough political choices in how to budget, design and deliver solutions that reduce risk. As a result, reliable and accurate climate and disaster risk data is essential to support decision makers in implementing policies and financing emergency response, recovery and reconstruction.
Against this backdrop, stakeholders from local communities, through to international organisations are using available data to assess vulnerability to multiple hazards to better understand – where and when disaster could strike. The framework for this is not yet structured to allow for easy and open access to what data does exist and, despite best efforts, the availability of tools to assess disaster risk and assist in building capacity to enhance resilience in those areas, where the poor and vulnerable are most exposed, is incomplete. Demand for data is growing and this is fuelled by initiatives like the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and
the Paris Agreement. At the same time, data is becoming more complex, there is more of it and more challenges as a result. Open-data, common standards and interoperability are increasingly needed and being used to solve these challenges.