About the Talk

Durable housing for a resilient future. Around the world, natural disasters destroy thousands of lives and erase decades of economic gains each year. These outcomes are undeniably devastating and completely preventable, says mason Elizabeth Hausler — and substandard housing is to blame. It’s estimated that one-third of the world will be living in insufficiently constructed buildings by 2030; Hausler hopes to cut those projections with a building revolution. She shares six straightforward principles to approach the problem of substandard housing: teach people how to build, use local architecture, give homeowners power, provide access to financing, prevent disasters and use technology to scale. “It’s time we treat unsafe housing as the global epidemic that it is,” Hausler says. “It’s time to strengthen every building just like we would vaccinate every child in a public health emergency.”

This talk was presented at “We the Future,” a special event in partnership with the Skoll Foundation and the United Nations Foundation.

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About the Speaker

Dr. Elizabeth Hausler is the Founder and CEO of Build Change and a global expert on resilient building and post-disaster reconstruction. Elizabeth’s strategic direction and leadership has grown the organization from a few employees in 2004 to over 230 strong working on three continents in 2018. Her emphasis on rebuilding to withstand future disasters has distinguished Build Change from its peers, won international honors and profoundly influenced global development policy by making resilience a major consideration for reconstruction efforts in an era of ever-increasing natural disaster risks.

Watch and Learn More

Retrofitting for Prevention (Colombia) A 3-minute video that shares the stories of Nohelia and Maria, residents of informal neighborhoods in Medellin, who decided to retrofit their homes to reduce their risk of collapse in the next earthquake. [Spanish with English subtitles]

Usha’s Story: A Retrofitted Nepali Home This 10-minute video, produced with the financial support of DFID, has been seen by more than 70,000 people in Nepal. It documents Usha Didi’s decision to retrofit her house as well as the final product and impact on her family. [In Nepali with English subtitles]

Virtual Reality Tour of Eklephant, Nepal Take a virtual tour through Eklephant Village in Nepal! In partnership with Autodesk, Build Change has adapted Revit® software to rapidly design retrofits for similar types of buildings, greatly reducing the time required for design and gathering cost estimates.

AI for Retrofitting (Call for Code) A team of developers, coders, and volunteers from Build Change in Nepal were among the top three finalists in the global Call for Code Developer Challenge, a prestigious worldwide competition sponsored by IBM that seeks to identify and promote creative digital approaches to disaster relief and preparedness. In this video, the Post-Disaster Rapid Response Retrofit (PDR3) team shares their innovative application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) code to assess structural criteria on damaged buildings following natural disasters.

Economic Progress and Disaster Resilience (Philippines) A 3-minute video animation of the potential for retrofitting and economic development in Pembo, Metro Manila, Philippines.

Closing the Protection Gap In 2018, RMS and their client volunteers visited Build Change communities in Nepal to deploy their skills and expertise to help solve practical community development challenges.

Building Change in Partnership Autodesk and Micro Documentaries joined forces to produce this two- and- a- half minute mini-documentary about Build Change and its mission to save lives in earthquakes and typhoons by building disaster-resistant buildings.

Report: Building Back Housing in Post-Disaster Situations: Building Back Housing in Post-Disaster Situations

Report: Build Back Better-Strategies for Societal Renewal in Haiti: https://buildchange-web.s3.amazonaws.com/resources/pdfs/INNOVATIONS-5-4_Build-Back-Better_Hausler.pdf

Report: Seismic Retrofit of Housing in Post-Disaster Situations: Seismic Retrofit of Housing in Post-Disaster Situations

Partnership with the World Bank for Global Resilient Housing: https://buildchange.org/build-change-helps-world-bank-to-launch-new-global-resilience-housing-program/

We the Future from TED, Skoll Foundation and United Nations Foundation