Approaches to Structural and Non-structural Hazard Mitigation for a better Resilience

The tremendous growth for number of the disasters such as earthquake has caused massive destruction to human life and property, where these events have occurred near settlements. Significant damages are evident near to highly dense populated areas such as Tehran that made the community more vulnerable. For the improved resilience from all its aspects, e.g. economic, society, cultural, and psychological impact, there is an emerging need to increase the human safety and security of settlements and facilities in order to remain functional aftermath of a disaster.
In that sense structural and non-structural assessment and rehabilitation of such facilities should be taken as priority. By taking into account the mandate of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) to promote sustainable development, UN-HABITAT and Centre for Health Leadership Studies (CHLS) at Shakhes Pajouh Research Institute intend to jointly organize a serial of training courses on “Approaches to Structural and Non-structural Hazard Mitigation for a better Resilience” to be held in Tehran – Islamic Republic of Iran, for professionals and experts.
The initial concept note has been made by UN-Habitat and after several times of the revision, the concept note has been finalized and agreed between two parties.

Targets and beneficiaries

This training course is mainly suitable for  the mid/high level managers, professionals, CEOs, executive director of urban facilities, researchers, civil engineers,  academicians especially postgraduate students majored in public health in the disaster,  NGO members, disaster relief manager, and so forth. Most of the modules were taught in English and the participants were assessed during ending the training course by having the examination test. 

Duration and Participation

The three-days training course was conducted between 7 and 9th February, 2016 at Shakhes Pajouh. 16 people participated in this course and majority of the participants were PhD students majoring Health Management in the Disaster.


The objectives

This training course was majorly aimed to introduce some of the structural and non-structural approaches for a better safety before, during and aftermath of a disaster event. Moreover, the detailed objectives of this course are as below:

  1. To share knowledge with Iranian experts revealing the most updated concepts of hazard mitigation by providing capacity building
  2. To understand and explain the key concepts of disaster risk reduction
  3. To understand & explain the evolution of DRR, international instruments & UN-Habitat’s approach to DRM
  4. To make participants understand about earthquake mechanism and impacts
  5. To discuss structural and non-structural components and damage mechanism
  6. To introduce process of non-structural vulnerability assessment and retrofitting for new and existing facilities
  7. To create a cadre of skilled personnel, capable of non-structural retrofitting and conduct training

Covered modules and speakers

Overall, 14 modules were covered in this training course by UN-HABITAT. The brief summary of these modules and the selected guest speakers during the three days are as below:

Day 1:

The first day was started at 9:00 am by the opening session and introductory about the UN-HABITAT office in Iran. Dr Akdogan had speech on this session. The session was continued to teach total five modules were during the first day. Two modules were about earthquake and seismology which was conducted by Dr Mojarab. After break, structural safety of facilities has been taught by Dr Akdogan and the session was ended up by two speeches; Mr Nazari (on earthquake preparation) and Dr Shaafi (on professional ethics).

Day 2:

Overall, five modules were covered during the second day. Starting at 9:00, Dr Akdogan recapitulated on what has been discussed during the previous day. He continued the session with introducing the module of structural vulnerability assessment. He expressed the main concepts and notes on the assessment of structural safety for the facilities with a particular focus on health facilities. After lunch break, Dr Akdogan talked about the non-structural safety assessment with regard to the main points and concepts. He expressed that the importance of non-structural safety issues are as important as structural safety issues and they need to be understood carefully.  Dr Mobini ended up the session by discussion about the earthquake hazard mitigation, its management and community resilience.

Day 3:

The last day of training course was started by 9:00 am. Dr Akdogan, after recapitulation, discussed about the non-structural retrofitting module. This module was more about the approaches we can implement in order to have safer facilities to live. After that, participants were grouped into two to do teamwork filling the non-structural assessment forms of the office building. This teamwork was supervised by Dr Akdogan and it took 2 hours to complete. Thereafter, Dr. Khorasani lectured module of non-structural hazard mitigation and this contniuted by introduction of hospital safety index and the assessment book which has been published by Dr Ardalan and his colleagues. The training course was wrapped up by Dr. Akdogan and ended up at 16:00 pm.


The first trading course in collaboration with UNHABITAT was successfully held at Shakhes Pajouh. We have received several good feedbacks from the participants. The related topics and modules were carefully designed and arranged by Dr. Akdogan and Ms Abbasi and the participants enjoyed learning all modules during these three days. We hope we will be able to continue holding such events for the top level managers, governor and policy makers at high level and position in order to have a more sustainable and resilient cities.




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