Forming radical collaborations to address climate and disaster risk: The Understanding Risk Field Lab
Organizer: Co-Risk Labs, Earth Observatory of Singapore, Arup, University of Toronto
|As an all-of-society challenge, addressing climate and disaster risk issues will require diverse participation and collaboration across boundaries of all sorts, whether they be disciplinary, national, professional, cultural, age, etc. Yet forming effective collaborations across these diverse boundaries is difficult and rare. With the support of the Understanding Risk community and World Bank Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance (DRFI) program, we organized a radical “unconference” event, the Understanding Risk Field Lab, which took place over four weeks in June 2019. During this time over 150 artists, scientists, engineers, designers, software developers, cartographers, non-profit staff, university researchers, government officials, and citizens gathered in Chiang Mai, Thailand to work together on projects related to urban flooding. The event’s schedule and organization was emergent and driven by attendees, with only three simple rules for participation: (1) Make something, (2) Document it, and (3) Contribute to the community. Together over this period, participants produced a body of work that included gallery-quality art, machine learning algorithms, aerial imagery, policy notes, maps created in collaboration with residents of the city, high tech ways of communicating flood risk, and experimental writing forms. More information including snapshots of outcomes can be found on the event website: https://urfieldlab.com/ During this session, organizers and participants of the UR Field Lab will showcase the process and results of the month-long unconference, answer questions about cross-disciplinary collaboration, and launch a new toolkit for designing such an unconference event. The toolkit can be found here: https://www.financialprotectionforum.org/fieldlabDuring this session, we will share information about the Understanding Risk Field Lab, its structure and outcomes. We will also share with the audiance a toolkit for how to organise your own Field Lab. Panelists will consist of organisers of the event along with some of the people who participated in it.
David Lallemant, Assistant Professor
Karen Barns, Senior Risk and Resilience Consultant
Perrine Hamel, Assistant Professor
Robert Soden, Assistant Professor
Rebecca Bicksler, Consultant