College of Built Environments

Institute for Hazards Mitigation Planning and Research

Institute Description
Planning and Research
Community Involvement
Course Offerings
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Institute Description

Who We Are:

The University of Washington Institute for Hazards Mitigation Planning and Research is an interdisciplinary academic Institute housed in the College of Built Environments. The creation of the Institute in the Fall of 1999 was a significant step in the evolution of the College’s involvement in disaster studies.  The Institute was an outcome of the participation of Dr. Richard McCormick, President of the University of Washington, at the 1997 Project Impact signing ceremony in support of the University's partnership.  The Institute is dedicated to exploring ways to integrate hazards mitigation principles into a wide range of crisis, disaster, and risk management opportunities. The Institute is interdisciplinary in focus and structure, and the capabilities of the Institute are enhanced by its close links with other academic and research organizations.

The College of Architecture and Urban Planning is currently launching new areas of specialization in environmental planning, land use/infrastructure planning and real estate development. Hazards mitigation is a track within the environmental planning specialization.

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Objectives:

  • Offer core curricula in hazards mitigation for private, public, and non-governmental organizations as a track within an environmental planning specialization.
  • Provide opportunities for students from various disciplines to incorporate mitigation principles into their major areas of study.
  • Provide students with service internships opportunities with private, public, and non-governmental organizations.
  • Create learning opportunities for practitioners who have been assigned Emergency and Risk Mitigation responsibilities.
  • Develop interdisciplinary research activities to provide service and research resources to private, public, and non-governmental organizations.
  • Facilitate exchanges of knowledge and practice, both nationally and internationally.
  • Serve as a Washington State connection for other academic disaster research and education centers, institutes, and experts.

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Long Term Goals:

  • Develop an internationally recognized center of excellence in hazards mitigation planning, research and education.
  • Adapt courses for distance learning with special attention on private sector and non-governmental organizations.
  • Reduce the risks from natural and man-made hazards in the Pacific Northwest.
  • Develop strong stakeholder partnerships and influence development and redevelopment practices

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Director's Bio:

Bob Freitag is the Director of the Institute for Hazards Mitigation Planning and Research.

Bob Freitag is a Senior Instructor and Director of the Institute for Hazards Mitigation Planning and Research at the University of Washington.  The University of Washington Institute for Hazards Mitigation is an interdisciplinary academic Institute housed in the College of Architecture and Urban Planning within the College of Built Environments at the University of Washington. The Institute is dedicated to exploring ways to integrate hazard mitigation principles into a wide range of crisis, disaster, and risk management opportunities. It is interdisciplinary in focus and structure, and the capabilities of the Institute are enhanced through its close links with other academic and research organizations. Freitag is also a Certified Floodplain Manager and is on the Board of Directors with the Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM)

Before coming to the University, he was the Executive Director of the Cascadia Region Earthquake Workgroup, worked for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), was employed by several private architectural and engineering firms in Hawaii and Australia, and taught science as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Philippines. Freitag received his Master of Urban Planning degree from the University of Washington.

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