MEDIA ADVISORY: Expert available on post-hurricane recovery efforts

By Newsroom America Feeds at 8 Sep 2017

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9/8/17

MEDIA ADVISORY: Expert available on post-hurricane recovery efforts

CONTACT: Jodi Heckel, Arts and Humanities Editor, 217-300-2751

University of Illinois urban and regional planning professor Robert Olshansky is available for interviews regarding post-disaster recovery in the wake of hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

Olshansky is an expert in post-disaster recovery. In a book published earlier this year, “After Great Disasters: An In-Depth Analysis of How Six Countries Managed Community Recovery,” he looked at lessons that can guide governments in reconstructing after large-scale disasters. Olshansky said the best strategies include investing in open information flow and transparency, involving the public in reconstruction decisions and partnering with all the organizations working on rebuilding.

Olshansky closely followed the rebuilding efforts in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and co-wrote “Clear as Mud: Planning for the Rebuilding of New Orleans.” He found that bureaucracy, poor communication and a lack of coordination among various agencies hampered reconstruction.

He was also the lead investigator of a three-year project funded by the National Science Foundation that studied China’s recovery from the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake in order to develop a model for recovery management. Olshansky has collaborated on several NSF-funded studies of disaster recovery, including studies of Los Angeles after the Northridge earthquake in 1994 and Japan after the 1995 Kobe earthquake. He is the co-author of “Opportunity in Chaos: Rebuilding After the 1994 Northridge and 1995 Kobe Earthquakes.”

To contact Robert Olshansky, call 217-333-8703 or email robo@illinois.edu.

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