Institute for Global Health


Disability and Disaster

Disability and Disaster (credit: David Alexander)

Dates: Ongoing

Principal Investigator: University College London

Partners:  Texas A&M University, Council of Europe, Le Centre National d’Information et de Rencontre du Handicap (Luxembourg), University of Sydney, Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre.

Location: Global

Funding: Various

Contact: i.kelman@ucl.ac.uk

Project Summary

Traditional infrastructure, day-to-day life, and emergency procedures are designed for people without disabilities. However, an estimated 20% percent of the world’s population experiences physical, sensory, cognitive, or mental health issues--and people's status with respect to disability changes over time. This project researches how disaster risk reduction and disaster response can be fully inclusive, re-framing traditional perspectives and approaches regarding the role of people with disabilities in disaster-related activities. Society can tackle the challenges identified through partnering with and including people with disabilities in all phases of dealing with disaster.

Research Team

Dr Ilan Kelman

Dr Mary Wickenden

Prof David Alexander (UCL Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction)


Alexander, D. E. (2012). Disability and disaster. In B. Wisner, JC Gaillard, I. Kelman (Eds.), Handbook of Hazards and Disaster Risk Reduction (pp. 413-423). London: Routledge.

Kelman, I. and L.M. Stough (eds.). 2015. Disability and Disaster: Explorations and Exchanges. Palgrave Macmillan, New York.


Reference list [Word]

Council of Europe booklet - English [PDF]

Council of Europe booklet - French [PDF]


Sustainability & Climate Change

Population Health & Health Systems

Disability & Disaster [PDF]

Further research