Foster cross border cooperation between Jordan, Palestine and Israel
Increase chances of survival of the rural population during natural disasters in the first critical 72 hours
Reverse brain-drain from the region, thereby developing positive role and leadership models for young Jordanians, Israelis and Palestinians
To develop research and rescue capacity for earthquakes and other natural hazards in one of the most hazard prone areas
Strengthen the capacity of local safety and trade organizations
DeadSeaNet utilizes community based disaster preparedness to encourage cross border cooperation in the Dead Sea Region. The network is a product of partnerships between seismologists, seismic engineers, and environmentalists in Jordan, Palestine, and Israel.
Develop a strategy to train the citizens of rural communities to be their own First Responders in life-threatening disasters. This model can be adaptable to all other hazard prone areas in the world.
For the initial project, train local experts to view natural disasters, like earthquakes, as experiences that they can prepare for and protect their community against, particularly if they cooperate with neighbors and bury the hatchet for conflicts. Funds are being sought to seek equipment and expand the expertise in countries where this is most needed.
Train women, unemployed youth, and other minorities that are often overlooked. They will be mentored in leadership and economic development opportunities, to contribute to the social development and rescue capacity of their communities. Simultaneously, they will be trained in ways that these skills could be much more frequently applied in commercial, industrial, and general development projects.
Teach people the economic social and personal benefits from cross border cooperation and avoid rioting and other forms of violent behavior that erupt when a natural hazard strikes
The ICFC DeadSeaNet; partnership between seismologists, seismic engineers, and environmentalists from Jordan, Palestine, and Israel
Community organizers, religious leaders, medical personnel and construction planners for post-disaster reconstruction
Leaders from different religious and ethnic backgrounds from around the world
All work will be planned, implemented, and evaluated by interdisciplinary and cross border teams.
The work will be funded by governments, international agencies, and foundations that appreciate the potential of mobilizing local people in their own defense and encouraging them to plan and implement rescue activities.
DeadSeaNet will quickly be recognized as a good example of "21st Century Statecraft," Our partnership is bringing together Jordanian, Palestinian, and Israeli natrual scientists, social scientists, humanists, and environmentalists. These scientists are sharing their ideas and research orientations and joining in the use of the most advanced technologies as well as humanistic and culturally sensitive approaches, to foster cooperation and understanding that assures sustainable development for the unique Dead Sea Ecosystem, its inhabitants and beyond.
Science Diplomacy, heretofore, has been a rather limited enterprise. It created meeting spheres where scientists, as citizens of states in conflict, could meet and build provisional networks for communication at times when ordinary citizens could not. The purported “neutrality” of science made this legitimate; the limited technologies for communication made this a special privilege for scientists and a benefit for the statesmen who sanctioned this exception, particularly when this could provide any opportunities for intelligence gathering.
In the 21st century, science diplomats cannot claim neutrality in relation to political, economic or social interests because of the extremes of destructiveness and peacemaking enabled by scientific research itself. Neither can scientists claim a privileged position in creating networks. Ordinary citizens are not limited in their access to the dramatic expansion in the means of communication, neither by their limited technical savvy nor by their limited resources; and this communication the most repressive regimes cannot completely control. The communication of scientists in the global era, therefore, will be either part of the solution or part of the problem.
In a corner of the Middle East, science solutions proliferate and science diplomacy is taking on a new course. A group of Israeli, Jordanian and Palestinian scientists, as well as well-trained community organizers, are showing that they, overcoming restraints on cooperation, can bring about a renewed state of reflectiveness, communication, and responsibility by writing innovative scripts for trans-border scientific cooperation that benefits all people. Applying their scientific appreciation for complexity and taking a long range perspective on how they define the welfare and security of their respective nation states and that of the citizens of those states, they are melding their shared expertise to assure a sustainable development for the unique Dead Sea ecosystem, its local inhabitants, and beyond. Through the intensity and scope of their cooperation, they are modeling new hope for many millions of people, in the Middle East and elsewhere, caught in the ravages of intractable conflicts.
Recognizing that earthquakes, as well as other natural hazards, know no boundaries, these researchers and community leaders are focusing on these specific predicaments afflicting the Middle East. They utilize them for an innovative cooperation platform: if nature can bring destruction across borders, humans across borders must mobilize to mitigate nature’s destructiveness. They are developing a curriculum for science diplomats and stewards of the environment that responds to earthquakes and natural hazards as realities as well as metaphors for what undermines the very earth on which we stand. They are drawing their lessons from three realms: the best scientific research, the best policies for environmental sustainability, and the best experiences with cultures of cooperation and conciliation.
This Dead Sea region, with its mythical city of Jericho, is remembered since Biblical times as a region of active destruction through wars, earthquakes, and environmental depredation. These events, as well as the memories of these events, have repeatedly disrupted the lives of contemporary Jordanians, Israelis and Palestinians, and their ancestors alike. Pioneering earthquake scientist Jalal Dabbeek of An-Najah National University in Palestine wants to take the pulse of the planet from its lowest point and to raise humanitarian cooperation to higher possibilities. We are taking advantage of the greatest technological breakthroughs of just the past five years. This includes increases in the range of sensitivity and broadcast of data of professional monitoring tools and the comparably dramatic miniaturization in size, as well as cost, making this equipment available far beyond the few subsidized government and academic laboratories. We are developing a new scientific and educational package of instruments and programs: DeadSeaNet.
Reaching beyond borders as well as deeply within their own communities, they are organizing DeadSeaNet as a stethoscope to record ground-motion on both sides of the Dead Sea Fault and to decipher its complex dynamics. Their research focuses on microseismicity because investigating the behavior of small frequent earthquakes provides more valuable and abundant insights into the earth’s mysteries, globally, than observing the powerful and palpable but relatively rare earthquakes that provide less data for inferences. Since sharing seismic data and expertise saves lives and fosters sustainable development, DeadSeaNet is also developing innovative earthquake visualization tools.
Online display of on-going seismicity will be made available to researchers, educators, decision-makers and concerned citizens of all ages. GIS analysis, ShakeMaps, microzonation maps and active fault maps will be designed and updated regularly. They will provide the professional, life saving needs of rescuers, local engineers, builders, planners and decision-makers, within and across borders. These state-of-the-art earthquake mitigation techniques are integrated into an appropriate cultural context and take advantage of direct cross-hierarchical interpersonal relationships between experts. This will result in monitoring that is more instructive, data analysis that is more comprehensive, and rescue strategies that will express greater empathy, and reduce suffering more effectively. The developments of these new standards will draw international humanitarian initiatives, as expressed in 19th century organizations like the Red Cross, into the actual possibilities of the 21st century by appropriating new technologies of life sustaining prediction, communication, and transportation.
To engage its social responsibility, DeadSeaNet has been expanding the scope of its original earthquake research activities to include education, training and public awareness. It has initiated expertise transfer across borders through a series of professional training courses for local engineers and builders as well as seminars at local public schools, spotting new opportunities for vastly expanding the usefulness of innovative research and monitoring potential.
We believe that an educated and well-trained public will be less vulnerable to future earthquake destructiveness and act more responsibly in regard to their natural and social environments; raised earthquake and environmental awareness will generate additional work opportunities to local populations; this will faciilitate the integration of young local scientists trained overseas, DeadSeaNet will reverse brain-drain from the region, thereby developing positive role and leadership models for young Jordanians, Israelis and Palestinians. Our certified experts on community disaster preparedness will form consulting firms working first throughout the Middle East and the Gulf states, but ultimately with a global span in view of the rising demand for life saving preparedness against the destructiveness of climate change.
DeadSeaNet was set up incrementally over a period of five years. Generous grants for over US$ 1.8 million were provided by leading international funders including the Minerva Foundation, the Rothschild Foundation, the Richard Lounsbery Foundation, the Swiss Development Agency and USAID-MERC.
EcoPeace Middle East (formerly Friends of the Earth) - Middle East
EcoPeace Middle East is a transborder NGO that has made outstanding efforts for two-decades to protect the environment by educating the Palestinian, Israeli and Jordanian public about their fragile ecosystem. We hope to learn from their experiences as an in cross-border cooperation and that this partnership will expand the impact of their work.
This international partnership is designing and promulgating a trans-border, interdisciplinary earthquake education program. Its members strive to model the relationships that this partnership promotes. This includes leadership and professional training for prevention and management of crises among adults, Quake-Brigades enlisting teenagers for training in disaster assistance in interactive earthquake learning stations, and Quake and Eco Parks for children to learn the power and fragilities of their environments through hands-on displays, games, amusements and experiential learning.
Read more about EcoPeace: http://www.foeme.org/www/?module=home
Leadership Training for Disaster and Crisis Management 02-14-2017
In January of 2017, the ICfC and an-Najah National University brought together a group of men and women from a diverse array of backgrounds to participate in a four-day project promoting nonviolent resistance in Palestine called “Social Crisis Management: Training the Trainer.” This project was the latest in a number of ongoing projects that ICfC have launched since March 2016 as part of our project to train the Jericho Municipality and Palestinian Emergency Committees on approaches to Community Based Disaster Management. Through the use of role-play the participates, enacted by ICfC Program Director Ashraf Awawda and facilitated Noa Radosh from Seeds of Peace, they learned how to defuse situations that are commonplace in Palestine and how to promote nonviolent responses. In a recent letter from the mayor of Jericho to Professor Hillel the mayor wrote: "I send you my deep thankfulness for the excellent and unique project...to benefit the people of Jericho and inspire people all over Palestine and beyond." The Leader Training is, but one project that ICfC have implemented in Jericho.
We would encourage you to read our full report on our four-day project “Social Crisis Management: Training the Trainer” and to continue to follow our project around disaster management in Palestine.
Image by Colin Tsoi