Disaster preparedness – PDF books collection: no cost to download in PDF (click image to see full size)

As of mid 2017 there are 23 books about emergency planning and disaster management at the publisher for the USA’s National Academies of Science. The PDF version downloads at no cost. The print editions are priced to cover actual cost of paper and ink and shipping. Some books are case studies or workshop results, while others give guidance on methods, policies and ways to manage emergencies according to the research experts or the professionals at the disaster location or who work in emergency operation centers.

    The subjects of these books all relate to emergency planning and disaster management, but some focus on medical care and deciding how best to use the resource people, places, equipment and medicines. Other books talk about community resilience -how to measure and how to increase the ability to bounce back from a serious emergency. There are books about each type of disaster, too: coastal flooding, tsunami, earthquakes, terrorism, or alerting systems. There is even one book about lessons learned about the risks of nuclear power generation, based on the TEPCO troubles at Fukushima. So there is a treasure of valuable knowledge, experience and study of issues for thinking about better and better planning and response to disasters.

    The idea for inviting leaders of the sciences together to solve national problems began with President Lincoln in 1863, around the same time as the Land Grant college system for developing knowledge useful in each of the states (1862 Morrill Act). About 100 years later the NAS merged with the Engineering academy, and 10 years after that the medical academy also joined. So now the range of book titles and current NAS projects is very wide. But the goal is still the same: to bring smart people together to solve difficult or important problems, as well as to share the results with others through the NAP, National Academies Press.

     To help website visitors to find valuable books, some of the publications are grouped into Searchable Collections, such as the one for Emergency Planning and Disaster Management. Other sources of good reading on disaster science are at FEMA and the Knowledge Hub relaunched May 2017 at the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience, aidr.org.au. Of course the variety of books for the search term “disaster management” at Amazon.com is vast, too. For discussions about the field research by ethnographers who study disasters and the aftermath, there is the Google Group, Disasters and Applied Anthropology.