Building back better after disasters leads to more resilient, capable communities

Practical Action encourages humanitarian agencies to embrace the goal of “building back better”. This means much more than just leaving people with stronger physical structures. It means helping families, communities, social networks and local markets emerge from crises more capable to cope and adapt to future threats.

To achieve this resilience people affected by disaster need as large a role as practicable in the decision-making and management of humanitarian resources. The processes of reconstruction planning and implementation often matter just as much as their outcomes. Putting crisis-survivors at the centre of these processes empowers them, strengthens their capabilities and confidence.

Early attention to recovery and reconstruction is also important. Decisions taken during the ‘emergency relief’ phase of disasters, can have a major impact later on the prospects for sustainable recovery of people’s livelihoods and communities.

Principles of 'building back better'

We aim for more resilient, capable communities in the aftermath of disasters. To encourage this, we promote seven principles that underpin our recovery and reconstruction work.

Explore the values that inform Practical Action’s approach

'Building back better' in practice

In the aftermath of disasters, Practical Action aims to encourage the emergence of more resilient, capable communities and households.  We have built up a body of experience and practical tools for post-disaster programming, that are relevant to different themes.

Find out more about Practical Action’s recovery and reconstruction work

Practical tools for 'building back better'

Our technical information service offers free downloads on a range of topics related to reconstruction.

We also have a technical enquiry service where anyone working in poverty reduction, or on small-scale technology projects, can ask a question and receive a response from our local experts free of charge

Download tools and other resources for people-centred reconstruction

Related content

Lorem ipsum

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse ultrices libero sit amet nunc posuere fringilla. Praesent semper mattis sem, ut lacinia velit volutpat gravida.

Lorem ipsum

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse ultrices libero sit amet nunc posuere fringilla. Praesent semper mattis sem, ut lacinia velit volutpat gravida.

Lorem ipsum

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse ultrices libero sit amet nunc posuere fringilla. Praesent semper mattis sem, ut lacinia velit volutpat gravida.

Practical Answers

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse ultrices libero sit amet nunc posuere fringilla. Praesent semper mattis sem, ut lacinia velit volutpat gravida.

Blogs - disaster risk reduction

Nepal Earthquake - should more have been done to prepare?

On my way back from visiting our projects in Zimbabwe and just arrived in Johannesburg airport. I landed to hear the devastating news of the Nepalese earthquake. Over 1,000 people dead and I suspect from what I know of Kathmandu, that the death toll will most certainly rise. Thankfully we have...
Read more

River eroded extreme poor face a life of endless struggles

Bangladesh has made significant progress, in poverty alleviation and addressing some other social and human disparity, such as gender and social exclusion. However, a group of people, who are extremely poor and vulnerable (some also called them as ultra-poor), remain a challenge for creating an o...
Read more

Calculating the cost of landslides in Nepal

Nepal is a mountainous country characterized by rugged topography, steep relief, extensive deforestation and high levels of seismic activity. With a climate characterized by intense rainfall and flash flooding, especially during monsoon season, the country is highly susceptible to landslides. ...
Read more

The 9th Community-Based Adaptation Conference: ensuring adaptation works for smallholder farmers

The 9th Community-Based Adaptation conference (CBA9) will take place in Nairobi, Kenya from 24-30 April, 2015. Organized by the International Institute of Environment and Development, and co-sponsored by Practical Action, the conference will bring together development practitioners to ...
Read more

So what exactly is Technology Justice?

If you work in the development sector, the term may be familiar and you may well know the answer. But as an outsider, joining the Practical Action team in Kathmandu for three weeks in January, I had no idea. Here’s the first thing I found: It does not mean giving everyone an iPhone. Joking asi...
Read more

no comments