With a multi-million euro grant from the European Commission, PARATUS is one of the largest ongoing UT projects. In the project, where ITC researchers Cees van Westen and Funda Atun are the driving forces, 19 parties from 12 countries are working together. The project aims to increase the preparedness of first and second responders in the face of multi-hazard events and reducing the risks related to impacts on various sectors.
Rescue missions after this week’s devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria are well under way. Scientists at the University of Twente have developed various post-disaster solutions to help first responders, but their technology hasn’t made it to practice. ‘We have drones, algorithms and other advanced technology, but our solutions are not used,’ say ITC researchers Norman Kerle and Francesco Nex.
Scorching heat drying out our lakes and ponds. Heavy storms flooding our streets, gardens and houses. The changing climate is coming closer and closer to home. It is no longer ‘only’ about melting ice caps thousands of kilometers away. And the disasters that climate change is fueling are beginning to hit us all. What can we do to prevent these (un)natural disasters? Is it even possible to at least reduce the risks? Or are we all utterly and completely screwed?
As the plane begins to pick up speed, a shower of sparks flies off the rapidly spinning wheels. A short time later, I see the blazing landing gear disappear inside the nacelle...
Maarten van Aalst is the new professor for ‘Spatial resilience for Disasters Risk Reduction’ at the Prinses Margriet Research Chair (ITC Faculty). ‘I want to look back and see that my work has made a real difference, that it reduced mortality and human suffering.’