Call for Conference Sessions - International Open Science Conference: Global Environmental Change Challenges and Innovations

International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment

ISSN: 1759-5908

Article publication date: 19 July 2011



(2011), "Call for Conference Sessions - International Open Science Conference: Global Environmental Change Challenges and Innovations", International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, Vol. 2 No. 2.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Call for Conference Sessions - International Open Science Conference: Global Environmental Change Challenges and Innovations

Article Type: News items From: International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, Volume 2, Issue 2

21-24 February 2012Chennai, IndiaOrganized by: Department of Applied Geology, University of Madras, India

Introduction and background

Human interference with nature has not only damaged ecosystems and the environment but has also affected the scope for livelihood security of current and future generations. Several attempts have been made by the scientific community to understand the root cause of global environmental change (GEC) and suggested various research pathways for the coming decades. Several research innovations have been made especially during the last two decades in addressing environmental issues, protection of ecosystems and human impacts through multi-disciplinary approaches. Civil society organizations and other end-users of the field-based activities have largely resulted in the recovery of degraded ecosystems and restoration of environment. Assigning property rights to open access environmental goods using protected areas and co-management approaches have been successfully practiced in different parts of the world. Some strong attempts have also been made to bridge the gap between the scientific findings and implementation in the field to achieve tangible results in enhancing environmental quality.

Human induced impacts, especially rapid urbanization and the growth of world population, are some of the contributing factors for GEC. In addition, the world has been facing a complexity of episodic disasters like earthquakes, tsunamis, etc. along with climate-induced disasters like cyclones, floods, and droughts. Most recently, on the 11 March 2011, an undersea earthquake of magnitude nine on Richter scale, triggered a giant tsunami of about 23 m height, which travelled a distance of about 5 km inland and devastated about nine prefectures along the northeast coast of Japan. The severity of this natural disaster and its impact on environment, economy, and community is yet to be studied and fully understood.

At a time when the world is grappling with climate-related disasters and climate change issues, assessing the vulnerability and resilience, the recent disaster in Japan has diverted the attention of scientific community to this new challenge. The scientific community needs to look into this challenging task to brainstorm, debate and consolidate research findings towards new policy formulations. In this context, an international event at Chennai is proposed to enable the meeting of scientists and experts of national and international repute to discuss and debate research outcomes to face the new challenges in the wake of disaster induced environmental changes. This gathering will also be an occasion to offer our empathy and salute the brave people of Japan on the occasion of first anniversary of the 2011 tsunami. It is expected that this open science international forum will enable increased focus towards disaster induced environmental issues pertaining to coastal areas of various parts of the world.


The international conference aims to review and interpret results from new research to enable their effective implementation at various levels, to protect our environment; and to make an appraisal of the challenges to progress in the wake of new episodic and climate-induced disasters.

Participants’ profile

The three-day open science international conference being multi-disciplinary in nature, will have participants who are subject experts in the field of environmental studies, ecosystem and biodiversity conservation, ecological assessment, climate change, water resources, disaster management, representatives of prominent civil society organizations, senior government officials and representatives of various international/regional agencies. The expectation is to accommodate about 150 key participants from India and abroad apart from about 50 young scholars and students working in the field of environmental studies.

Expected outcomes

The ultimate goal is to promote a stronger collaboration between academics, scientists, political decision makers, civil society organizations and field practitioners, acting at local, regional, and global scales in order to capture the benefits of environmental management, as well as mitigate and adapt to GEC and its impacts.

Scientific sessions

  • Paleoclimate/environmental studies and climate forecasts.

  • Ecosystems responses to GEC including valuation and TEEB.

  • Property rights associated measures for ecosystem conservation.

  • Urbanization and GEC.

  • Societal transformations and sustainable development.

  • Land and soil degradation and environmental impact assessment.

  • Water cycle and land use/cover changes.

  • Carbon and air quality changes.

  • GEC and human livelihood.

  • Episodic disasters, disaster risk reduction, resilience and GEC.

  • Climate change mitigation issues and adaptation methods.

  • Clean energy technologies.

  • Economics, policies, and governance.

  • Challenges to science and society.

  • Disaster resilience and the built environment.

Conference proceedings

The papers presented in this conference will be published either in the form of a reference book through a rigorous editorial process by an internationally reputed publisher or as theme- wise special issue(s) in relevant international journals, including the International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment ( The International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment will also be presenting a best paper award, based on panel recommendations during the conference.


Initial acceptance has been received from the following institutions/organizations (update of 15 April 2011):

  • Centre for Disaster Resilience, The University of Salford, UK.

  • Centre for the Economics and Management of Aquatic Resources (CEMARE), University of Portsmouth, UK.

  • Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Kathmandu, Nepal.

  • Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra, Universita’ di Ferrara, Italy.

  • Environmental Sciences Center, Federal University of Pará – UFPA, Brazil.

  • Instituto Politécnico Nacional (IPN), México, DF.

  • Institute of Applied Physics, Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia.

  • Kyoto University, Japan.

  • Southeast Asia Disaster Prevention Research Institute and Institute for Environment and Development (LESTARI), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Malaysia.

  • Tokyo Polytechnic University, Japan.


Initial acceptance has been received from the following agencies/organizations/industries (update of 15 April 2011):

  • Asian University Network of Environment and Disaster Management.

  • BEDROC, Nagapattinam.

  • Earth Smiles, Chennai.

  • SEEDS, India.

Conference secretariat

Department of Applied Geology, University of Madras, Chennai, India.

Dr M. Jayaprakash (Administration)

Dr R.R. Krishnamurthy (Scientific)

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