Losses resulting from natural hazards are a large and growing problem in the United
States. While attention tends to focus on the problems that immediately follow devastating
floods, hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires, the ongoing costs to the U.S.
economy are enormous, on the order of hundreds of millions of dollars each week.Broad efforts to address this problem are in place across the federal government.
Within the White House, the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) plays a
key role in coordinating the research and development policies upon which the
technical response to hazard losses is based. To support OSTP in this task, RAND
carried out a comprehensive analysis of current hazard loss R&D funding, identifying
programs and activities that contribute to hazard loss reduction. The analysis addressed
the following questions:
|• ||What is the distribution of federal R&D funding across various hazards and
across areas of focus (prediction, infrastructure improvements, mitigation techniques)?|
|• ||What criteria determine the allocation of these funds?|
|• ||How do these R&D efforts contribute to hazard loss reduction?|
This report presents the analysis and its findings, along with a number of policy
recommendations for increasing the effectiveness of current R&D efforts.
About the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
The Office of Science and Technology Policy was created in 1976 to provide the
President with timely policy advice and to coordinate the federal investment in
science and technology.
About the Science and Technology Policy Institute
Originally created by Congress in 1991 as the Critical Technologies Institute and
renamed in 1998, the Science and Technology Policy Institute is a federally funded
research and development center sponsored by the National Science Foundation
and managed by RAND. The Institute's mission is to help improve public policy by