Annual National Roundtable on Disaster Risk Reduction

Canada's National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction

The purpose of the Annual National Roundtable on Disaster Risk Reduction (the Roundtable) is to bring together stakeholders from all sectors to have an ongoing national dialogue on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). Participation in the Roundtable is open to any interested parties, departments, organizations or individuals. There is no fee for participation.

The Fifth Annual National Roundtable Event

The Fifth Annual National Roundtable will take place on October 21, 2014 at the Courtyard by Marriott Downtown Toronto, 475 Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario.

This fifth anniversary year’s Roundtable is themed Rethinking Roles in Disaster Risk Reduction, which reinforces that all stakeholders have a role to play in DRR and this includes looking at innovative approaches to disaster recovery. We will hear the perspectives of senior leaders from federal, provincial and municipal public sectors, international fora, and the private and financial sectors on how they interpret their responsibilities in enhancing disaster resilience.

The draft Agenda at a Glance is available here.

To register for this free event, please email the Platform secretariat at, with the following information:

  • your first and last name
  • name of organization being represented (if applicable)
  • sector representation if applicable (public sector, private sector, academia, non-governmental organization, volunteer, First Nations, Inuit, Metis or individual.

As in previous years, the Roundtable will be followed by the Canadian Risk and Hazards Network (CRHNet) annual symposium.

For information or to register for CRHNet's 11th annual symposium, visit their website:

Past Annual National Roundtable Events:

Fourth Annual Roundtable - Building Blocks of Resilience: Local, National and Global Perspectives

November 5, 2013, Regina, Saskatchewan

The Fourth Roundtable was opened with welcoming remarks from Ms. Roxanne James, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, followed by a statement from Saskatchewan Deputy Minister of Government Relations, Mr. Al Hilton.

Over 130 participants from all sectors, including a strong aboriginal presence this year, benefitted from a diverse program incorporating a Talk-Show about the current state of DRR moderated by CBC news reporter Stefani Langenegger. Talk-Show panelists represented the United Nations (UN) International Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction, global risk reinsurer from the private sector, and federal and provincial governments. Participants also had the opportunity to contribute to and analyse principles of resilience through case studies. Afternoon parallel sessions spoke to a wide variety of issues such as: climate change adaptation; knowledge management; land use; risk assessment; financial implications of disasters; aboriginal resilience; and development of a successor to the current UN framework on DRR.

Twitter was an integral component of the Roundtable and served to foster increased outreach and engagement. It enabled individuals to keep ideas and discussions flowing through tweets using the hashtag #CDNdrr. Teleconference services were also used to facilitate remote participation in the Talk-Show portion of the schedule. The 2013 Roundtable Report can be found here.

Third Annual Roundtable - From Reaction to Resilience

October 23, 2012, Vancouver, British Columbia

As the Platform matures, knowledge about the National Roundtable has continued to grow. Registration for the third annual national Roundtable reached some 200 individuals and was a great success.  

After a welcome from Shirley Bond, Minister of Justice and Attorney General, British Columbia; the Third Roundtable engaged the membership in discussions on issues central to the four Platform working groups and continued to elicit commentary and feedback to inform the way forward for Canada's Platform. The highlight of the event was a talk-show moderated by local CBC journalist Duncan McCue, eliciting perspectives of senior level panelists from various sectors including, the City of Port Moody, the United States Federal Emergency Management Agency, TELUS, the Canadian Red Cross and Public Safety Canada.

Participants were highly engaged in the afternoon sessions while examining solutions to hard questions on the future of DRR as it relates to the private sector; connectedness of communities and networks; governments; and climate change.  Participants also tackled the issue of public awareness and mobilizing citizen engagement by providing insight on strategies, approaches, leveraging social media and Web 2.0 and trying to pinpoint the motivators that would truly call all stakeholders to action.

The varied representation of disaster and emergency management stakeholders enabled many interesting and valuable discussions, highlights of which are captured in the Roundtable Final Report.

Second Annual Roundtable - Community Resiliency

October 18, 2011, Ottawa, Ontario

Over 130 participants attended the Roundtable from across public, private, academic, volunteer and non-governmental sectors.

The Roundtable featured Opening Remarks by the Honourable Vic Toews, Minister for Public Safety Canada, a keynote address delivered by Paul Kovacs, Executive Director for the Institute of Catastrophic Loss Reduction, and a presentation given by Richard Walton, Mayor of North Vancouver District.

The objectives of the Second Annual Roundtable were to:

  • Update the general membership on the progress achieved since the Platform launch in October 2010;
  • Revise and update the Action Plan that was elaborated following the 2010 Roundtable; and
  • Empower and engage the general membership in continuing to advance the issues surrounding disaster risk reduction.

The discussions held at the Second Annual Roundtable informed the work and priorities of the Platform Working Groups and Advisory Committee, and will be used to review and update the Action Plan. The Final Report is available.

Inaugural Meeting

October 26, 2010, Fredericton, New Brunswick

The Inaugural Roundtable event served to launch and lay the foundation for Canada's Platform. Over 70 participants attended the Roundtable from across public, private, academic, volunteer and non-governmental sectors.

The Roundtable featured a keynote address delivered by Sálvano Briceño, the Director of the Secretariat of the UN/ISDR. Minister Trevors, Government of New Brunswick's Ministry of Public Safety, officially opened the Roundtable.
The objectives of the Roundtable were to:

  • Launch Canada's Platform for DRR;
  • Discuss the vision for Canada's Platform, identify key priorities for action and areas for collaboration;
  • Enable inclusive, horizontal and participatory dialogue with disaster risk reduction stakeholders across Canada; and
  • Identify and confirm Canada's Platform Advisory Committee.

Following the Inaugural meeting, a Final Report was prepared.