Kanchan Shrestha is a 2011 Sabin Fellow with acaedemic interests in water resources and the policy making process - specifically how policy is scaled from international/national arena to the community level and vice-versa. In thes summer of 2011, she conducted research on disaster management policy in Nepal, using the 2008 Koshi flood as a case study.
Every year, over 150, 000 people are affected by disasters such as floods, landslides and drought in Nepal, causing an estimated 43 million USD in damages. To address these recurrent disasters governmental institutions under the Disaster Relief Act (1982) mainly focused on response measures. The work of the government institutions are supplemented by various local, national and international organizations. The need for an integrated approach includes preparedness and mitigation that led to the formulation of the National Strategy for Disaster Risk Management (2009). However, a key challenge for disaster management continues to be lack of coordination among organizations to successfully implement these policies. Using the Koshi River flood of 2008 as a case study I examine the disaster management policy in Nepal. From qualitative data collected through interviews with policy makers, international, national and local organizations, as well as flood victims I observed several themes during my research: such as 1) the influence of international organizations and international movement in disaster risk reduction in the policy making process in Nepal; 2) the people from government, international organization and flood victims alluding to corruption in the other group of people, and 3) the rehabilitation the flood victims again in the flood prone areas. I will explore these themes and seek recommendations as I write my thesis in the next few months.