Flash floods in Uttarakhand (2013). Tsunami in South-east Asia (2004). Earthquake in Haiti (2010). Earthquake in Japan (2011). These are some of the deadliest disasters that have occurred over the past decade. With the disasters come human, livestock and property losses and the task of rebuilding the disaster affected areas. But the biggest task in the aftermath of any disaster, natural or man made, is relief work.
Countries across the world have been on the lookout for reducing the impact of man made and natural disasters by developing mechanisms to deal with such disasters. However the responses to the previous disasters which have occurred in India show our lack of preparation. The worst part is that such preparation is hardly given any importance. Humanitarian logistics is the key to cope up with such disasters. It specializes in organizing the warehousing and delivery of supplies during natural disasters or complex emergencies to the affected area and people. The supplies include food, water, life-saving drugs and other necessary amenities. Time has come, for policy makers, Government bodies, academia, and practitioners to meet on a common platform to deliberate on this key issue of Humanitarian Logistics.
In wake of this, IIM Raipur is organizing International Conference on Humanitarian Logistics (IHCL) on 2nd December 2013 and 3rd December 2013. ICHL 2013 is the first conference organized in India on Humanitarian Logistics and will provide the platform to various stakeholders to deliberate on the same.
The conference aims at providing an essential update on natural and manmade disaster, future trends, disaster response, and preparedness and governance issues. Planning, co-ordinating and delivering the essential amenities in good condition, quality and quantity at the right place and right time are few of the key strategic issues in humanitarian logistics. ICHL will help in identifying and providing keen insights into these strategic issues to the various stake holders. ICHL will provide an opportunity for professionals to meet colleagues and peers in a positive environment fostering learning and sharing.
The conference will be a mix of panel discussions and technical issues. Panel discussion on Right to food: Value chain perspective will have extensive talks amongst prominent personalities on food security act and the key strategic issues such as procurement, transportation, storage and delivery involved in its implementation. The second panel discussion will be on Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief Operations. The speakers in this panel will deliberate on the role played by stakeholders such as governments, NGOs, international relief agencies etc. in improvising, learning, unlearning and relearning from the disaster experience. This will equip the various stakeholders with effective preparedness in dealing with future disasters. The panelists in the discussion on Strategic Issues in Humanitarian Logistics will dwell upon strategic organizational, operations and managerial challenges faced during the humanitarian crises to keep the material flows, financial flows and information flows up and running. The panelists in the final discussion on Managing Humanitarian Logistics will explore alternate ways of planning, designing, preparing, coordinating: strategic alliance, response, execution, performance and accountability, to outwit the various problems faced during the crises.
ICHL 2013 thus promises to be an eye opener to the importance of Humanitarian Logistics in disaster relief and management.