SimCenter’s Workshop on Disaster Recovery – Recap

March 6, 2020

The NHERI SimCenter organized and hosted an engaging and successful 2 day workshop, “Simulation and Data Needs to Support Disaster Recovery Planning”. Supported by the National Science Foundation, the workshop was held on January 30-31, 2020, at UC Berkeley, and was attended by sixty researchers and experts from around the country. It presented an opportunity for the exchange of ideas between researchers, developers, and end-users of simulation tools, data, and results for regional risk assessments. The workshop engaged and connected experts and stakeholders from various segments of the disaster-science community through plenary and breakout sessions with the aim to identify where computational simulation tools, under development by the SimCenter and other groups, can support the work of various government agencies and organizations to promote resilience from natural disasters.

The workshop fostered discussions and knowledge transfer across hazards (ground shaking, wind, and water), between disciplines (engineering, economics, social science), and among various roles in the community (stakeholder, researcher, analyst). The workshop agenda, presentations, and notes can be accessed at

Overarching themes gathered from workshop discussions are the following:

  • Integration of modular analysis elements into a flexible computation workflow framework is a good investment to leverage existing tools to simulate the effects of disasters and improve recovery of communities.
  • Simulation tools should capture a broad set of physical and socio-economic community characteristics, such as those related to residential housing, to foster interdisciplinary engagement.
  • Changes in the culture around data ownership, management, and sharing are essential to realize the full potential of collaborative research on disaster recovery planning.
  • Collection of high-quality data before and after disasters, including post-disaster longitudinal studies, is critically important to calibrate and validate simulation tools.
  • Testbed studies of natural disaster risk and recovery are effective vehicles to collaborate and advance research developments and implementation on disaster recovery planning.

A report with more information from the workshop is being developed. To be notified of its release, please fill out the subscription form and survey at

Categories of Experts

Workshop Attendees

Breakout Discussion