SEESAC Presents the Results of the Project “Disaster Loss Database in Serbia – DesInventar”

Nov 5, 2013

UNDP/SEESAC together with the Sector for Emergency Management at the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Serbia (SEM) presented the results of the pilot project “Disaster Loss Database Establishment in the Republic of Serbia”.  


Initiated in February 2013, this United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) funded project is a joint endeavour of the Sector for Emergency Management, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia and UNDP/SEESAC. Its aim is to establish a database of disaster losses using the UNISDR developed tool DesInventar.


DesInventar is a methodological and technological tool for the construction of databases of loss, damage, and effects caused by disasters, which permits not only the collection of historical records of disasters occurrences and losses, but their in-depth analysis and graphic representation. 


The project was presented to the public, the diplomatic corps and the media by Ms. Irena Vojackova-Sollorano, UNDP Resident Representative and UN Resident Coordinator in Serbia and Mr. Predrag Marić, Assistant Minister of Interior and Head of the Sector for Emergency Management, both of whom stressed the importance of this project and their satisfaction with the achieved results.


By all accounts, the amount and quality of historical data collected in the course of the project is more than impressive and represents not only a great start for the database in Serbia but also a great success at a global level.


Mr. Julio Serje, UNISDR Global Risk Assessment and Disaster Loss Accounting Programme Officer, gave an exhaustive presentation on the importance of loss databases to prevent disasters and emphasized the remarkable work done in Serbia so far.


Mr. Serje explained that DesInventar contributes to the strengthening of institutional and national capacities for risk information management systems and allows for the creation of a well thought-out, evidence-based, governmental investment planning in cost-effective disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate adaptation measures.


In other words, it is designed to help decision makers identify their disaster risk patterns and drivers at both local and national levels and identify effective, long-term solutions.


Ms. Selena Markovic from the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia presented the process of developing the database and the results of the data collection.


After six months of the project duration and two months of extensive research, the project research team managed to collect information on 1,485 disaster eventsthat took place in Serbia during the 27-year period from 1986 to the present,pilot a new model of data collection and establish a number of novelties in data collection including the collection of gender disaggregated data on DRR.


The collected data were processed, sorted and entered into a single “DesInventar”database, making Serbia one of the first European countries to successfully pilot the database developed by the UNISDR. Currently only 75 countries worldwide have disaster loss databases.


Colonel Pavle Pavkovic, Chief of Section for the recording and analysis data of emergency situations at home and abroad at the Sector for Emergency Management, who led the research team on behalf of the SEM, shared his experiences related to the implementation of the project and presented the preliminary findings obtained through this database.


“Disaster Loss Database Establishment in the Republic of Serbia”  is one of several activities implemented by UNDP/SEESAC which supports the efforts of the Serbian Government to strengthen the disaster risk reduction and recovery systems in the country.

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