Urban ARK 19: Communicating Risk from the Frontline: projecting community voices into disaster risk management policies across scales
Research carried out in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on cross-scalar risk communication and disaster risk governance reveals that, while there is considerable potential for communities to measure and communicate risk and to prioritise actions, there is little scope for them to influence disaster risk governance at this point in time. This is partly because, although disaster risk management (DRM) is devolved in Tanzania, it has not gone far enough to give adequate powers and financing to the lowest level of government at the sub-wards, which are at the frontline of managing the biggest everyday risks that people face. The effective communication of risks upwards from communities to governments, and of DRM policies and opportunities downwards to communities and across sectors is crucial to overcome these gaps. When communication is participatory and collaborative, there is scope for local city actors to reflect on the need for action to be joined across governance scales, and to ensure communication plays a key role at and between all levels.