Two years into the COVID-19 pandemic and eleven years since the Fukushima nuclear disaster


Two years into the COVID-19 pandemic and eleven years since the Fukushima nuclear disaster

The image illustrates four natural hazards and their related consequences
The image illustrates four natural hazards and their related consequences: an electron microscope image of the corona virus, a flooded urban area in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, houses destroyed from the L'Aquila earthquake, and damaged houses and debris on a beach after tsunami impact.

March 11 marks the day of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan that caused thousands of fatalities and the nuclear disaster in Fukushima. On the same day, two years ago, the World Health Organisation (WHO) announced that COVID-19 could be characterized as a pandemic. These two crises are emblematic of how natural hazards and related disasters continue to pose a major threat to societies. Droughts and floods, for example, affect more than 100 million people per year, and cause catastrophic losses in many regions of the world. While we cannot prevent extreme weather events, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and pandemics from occurring, societies can become more prepared and reduce vulnerabilities to mitigate their impacts and reduce losses.

The Centre of Natural Hazards and Disaster Science (CNDS) is an interdisciplinary research centre in Sweden that brings together early career scientists and leading researchers from engineering, social and earth sciences to work together in projects on natural hazards, socio-technological vulnerabilities, and societal security. The vision of the centre is to advance disaster risk reduction and contribute to enhancing society’s ability to prepare for and cope with natural hazard risk in the national and international context.

CNDS is a virtual research centre that was formed in 2010 when the Swedish Government marked natural hazards and disaster science as a strategic research area. Today, CNDS is Sweden’s leading research centre on natural hazards, disaster risk reduction and crisis management, comprising ten departments from three universities (Uppsala University, Swedish Defence University, and Karlstad University). During the last decade, more than 30 PhD students have graduated from the centre, which currently counts 28 active early career scientists (postdocs and PhD candidates). CNDS also supports early career researchers who advance in the field of interdisciplinary natural hazard and disaster science by awarding the CNDS Interdisciplinary Grants.

The centre contributes to the international educational curricula of disaster risk reduction through its renowned international research Summer School on Natural Hazards for doctoral students. Through the biennial conference Forum for Natural Hazards and Disasters and many national and international collaborations, CNDS keeps an open dialogue with practitioners in the field.

Upcomig seminar:22 March“Two years into the pandemic"

Please visit CNDS website ( for more information about the centre and for upcoming events, e.g., the upcoming research seminar “Two years into the pandemic” on 22 of March, CNDS Summer School on Natural Hazards (22-26 August), and CNDS Forum for Natural Hazards and Disasters (20 October).

News from the Department of Earth Sciences

Last modified: 2022-09-30