This publication is the first part of the Early Days of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) initiative, supported by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR). As a brief history document, it focuses primarily on the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR): its origins, the 1994 Yokohama Conference the IDNDR DRR days and campaigns, the engagement of the different UN agencies, and others. The publication highlights the key developments approaches and values of the early UN pioneers in disaster risk reduction. It also includes a timeline with the key events and developments between 1970 and 2000.
While the recent history of DRR (from 2000) is overall well documented since the establishment of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), there are serious gaps in the knowledge on the different actors and initiatives during the three early DRR decades. This publication aims to fill this gap. As part of this initiative, a walk-through history webpage will soon become available, consisting of timelines that focuses on the early DRR work carried out by different actors. A selection of DRR pioneers' interviews will also be accessible, capturing the earlier lessons learned and insights valuable for the current DRR discourse and practice.