Sustainable Futures Conference: Resilience to extreme events

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Aerial view of flooded houses and trees

Join ARU's Sustainable Futures research theme team on 21 and 22 June 2023 to hear experts and professionals share knowledge and practical insights on how to prepare for, and respond to extreme events.

Organisers: Dr Maryam Imani; Dr Fabrizio Galeazzi; Dr Nebil Achour

With the increasing frequency and severity of extreme events, it has become essential to build resilient systems and communities that can withstand and recover from their effects.

This event, organised by ARU's Sustainable Futures research theme, aims to bring together experts and professionals from around the globe to share knowledge and practical insights on how to prepare for and respond to extreme events.

You'll have an excellent opportunity to network, establish new partnerships, and share your own experiences and best practices.

The event is structured around three main themes:

Cultural Heritage

Heritage-led interventions and sustainable innovation can ensure agency and empowered communities - and their places are more resilient and sustainable, as well as contributing to safeguarding culture and heritage from natural hazards.

This session provides an opportunity to engage with disaster resilience thinking and practice across multiple specialisations towards a more participatory and sustainable management of heritage and culture in line with the Faro Convention and the UNESCO 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage.


Natural hazards stretch healthcare systems. During the covid pandemic, hospitals were often forced to cancel elective operations, develop new work approaches, and redeploy staff to treat infected patients and limit infection rates, whilst maintaining the most urgent operations.

Healthcare services are still in a challenging, but also potentially ground-breaking position to re-think the way they are designed and operated. This session brings together experts from the USA and Turkey to share knowledge and experience.


Infrastructure is the backbone of modern society and plays a vital role in ensuring our safety, security, and well-being. However, extreme events such as natural disasters, pandemics, and terrorist attacks can severely impact critical infrastructure systems, causing significant economic, social, and environmental damage.

Building resilient infrastructure that can withstand and recover from the effects of extreme events is therefore crucial to ensuring the continuity of essential services and the long-term sustainability of our communities.


Day 1 (21 June) – Morning

Theme 1 – Cultural Heritage

  • Prof Jigna Desai (CEPT University, India)
  • Dr Paola Di Giuseppantonio Di Franco (University of Essex, UK)
  • Prof Eray Çayli (University of Hamburg, Germany)
  • Prof Elizabeth Brabec (University of Massachusetts, Amherst, US)

Day 1 (21 June) – Afternoon

Theme 2 – Healthcare

  • Prof Virginia Murray (University of Cambridge, UK)
  • Prof Amber Mehmood (University of South Florida, US)
  • Prof Kurtulus Aciksari (Istanbul Medeniyet University, Turkey)
  • Prof Dan Barnett (Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, US)

Day 2 (22 June) – Morning

Theme 3 – Infrastructure

  • Prof Gavin Smith (North Carolina State University, US)
  • Prof Masakatsu Miyajima (Kanazawa University, Japan)
  • Prof Carmine Galasso (University College London, UK)

We look forward to welcoming you to this informative and engaging event.

This event takes place in LAB002 on ARU's Cambridge campus. For further information, email [email protected]

View the detailed programme and reserve your place on Eventbrite.

Reserve your place via Eventbrite