The September 11 terrorist attacks, the Chernobyl nuclear accident, Hurricane Andrew, and the Kobe earthquake are all recent examples of large-scale disasters that have taken a massive toll in human lives, wealth, and property. They have disrupted vital systems such as transport and energy supplies and spilled over into neighboring as well as distant regions. They have also generated widespread anxiety, and in some cases created deep-seated public mistrust of government's ability to protect its citizens.
This book is based on a report prepared in 2003 by a multidisciplinary team of experts from inside and outside the OECD. It examines the economic and social impacts of past large-scale disasters and draws a number of key lessons for the future. Its focus is on improving our ability to prevent disasters, and on restoring trust and securing recovery in their aftermath.