thesis on disaster relief


hey ..

im starting my thesis in a while.and i want to do it on disaster relief in India.with the flood conditiond increasing in the coastal areas.a very much low cost,ecological dwelling.
would really appreciate some help if any of you guys have done something similar to this before...with the research or books i can refer.

Aug 9, 07 12:10 pm

get design like you give a damn (book) by architecture for humanity
check out the open architecture network (website) also by architecture for humanity
also, see some interesting projects by cj lim's students at bartlett in book called devices

remember, disaster relief isn't always about designing a house. sometimes there's other factors at work and there can be other aspects (infrastructure, warning systems, etc) that can be as important, if not more so.
keeping this in mind will help make it a thorough and engaging thesis project.

Aug 10, 07 2:13 pm

disaster relief in India....start handing out condoms on every street corner

Aug 10, 07 2:31 pm

yes,i did that...couldn find th design like you give a damn book anywhere,so ordering it on amason now.
im finding it difficult to specify the program for it .for thesis,just to what extent should i be researching it?
and thanks a lot for your reply futureboy...

Aug 11, 07 1:12 pm

and really didn need to add that.
thanks anyway.

Aug 11, 07 1:12 pm

If your interested our team in Chennai might be able to meet and talk with you about our post-tsunami work. The role of the architect is not really needed in the first 2 phases on 'disaster relief' but crucial in the third.

1. Relief [not needed]
2. Recovery [in partnership with engineers]
3. Reconstruction [here is where community based architects are needed]


(co-founder of Architecture for Humanity and co-editor of DLYGAD)

Aug 11, 07 5:25 pm

can i get your contact detail or address sir. I am also thinking the same to do my architectural thesis on disaster relief in kerala. as we all know about kerala floods 2018. I was doing my internship here when flood came. I will be thnakful to you sir.


Iam also searching for a site of disaster relief proposals anywhere in India.... thankfully read it will be helpful if can I get contact details or little more details about the project


Did u guys get any help because I am thinking of doing the same now and I could really use some information


shit...disaster relief michigan...... since jobs go to india/china anyways

Aug 11, 07 9:18 pm

"disaster relief in India....start handing out condoms on every street corner"
mdler, reading threads on you and tumbleweed in archinect, i think its you who needs them condoms, jackass.

Aug 11, 07 9:44 pm

sameold, take it easy.

they should be handing out condoms on every street corner.

Aug 11, 07 10:01 pm

holz, if you know anything about the situations there, you would know that they actually ARE doing something akin to handing out condoms on street corners. they actually subsidize condoms heavily, but it takes time to change centuries of public perception. And, in a democracy (unlike China), a one child policy does not really work.

My comment was attacking the uninformed and unnecessary rant that people like mdler post all the time. This post also mentions the current sad situation of millions in India in the floods and it really does not warrant such bullshit from stupid interns.

Aug 11, 07 11:38 pm

there's alot of angst early on in the thread. I guess I can take the high road and ignore it by moving on.

RunawayGirl - do you have a project in mind aside from it being about diaster relief? Are you looking at creating an actual structure, an urban response? I'm curious as its something also dear to my heart.

Aug 12, 07 1:26 am

just mdler baiting folks. Maybe this will help you.

People living with HIV/AIDS 2 million - 3.1 million
Adult (15 years or above) HIV prevalence 0.36%

North America
People living with HIV/AIDS 1.4 million
Adult (15 years or above) HIV prevalence 0.8%

I'm sure you can argue your way around this but facts are facts.

Aug 12, 07 1:55 am

International Centre for Flood Architecture (based at my schooool, status unknown)

Aug 12, 07 2:39 am

link is not working sir


interesting. are there any projects fleshed out on the site?

RunawayGirl - Check out the Safe(r)house by Harvard students, also there was a team of danish students that created a cyclone house (Chaos Pilots perhaps).


Aug 12, 07 4:19 am

oh these really help.i did think of post tsunami rehabilitation,but right now,places like kerala and bihar are suffering a great deal bcuz they never get the exposure.even locally.
the water is upto the first floor levels and the people are being made to stay in the local schools since there is no other provision.and yet people go building new houses in those low lying areas.going there in a day...
and cameron,it'd be great if i could get to talk to them.

Aug 12, 07 11:11 am

hey did u finish doing your thesis on disaster management institute? because right now i am doing my thesis on disaster management institute. could u tell me where u did ur case studies?


architechnophilia , the thing is,im still not very clear as to what the project is to of now,a permanent structure for the affected places.providing better living conditions for the local farmers,..

Aug 12, 07 11:15 am

there are also a series of pontoon homes in Alabama (the only homes in the area to survive Katrina).

1.6 B people live in areas that will be affected by climate change (low lying cities near water). There is a huge potential to create flood resistant structures.

email me cameron(at)architectureforhumanity(dot)org and I'll give you purnimas' email.


Aug 12, 07 1:03 pm

just to go back to one factor.....and this is coming from some experience in academia. in order to develop this as a really engaging thesis project it is helpful to figure out what the most necessary aspects to engage are....this is definitely going to be a really good thing to talk with cameron about. his knowledge (and his afh team's knowledge) is extensive and they have truly "been in the trenches" on this. then you want to look at the issues and develop a narrative surrounding it that looks at ways you can solve multiple problems with your architectural intervention (what role does water infrastructure play into your design, can it suplement that of the surrounding environment, or become a teaching device for other people, etc.) then these will all become parameters that you'll constantly need to measure your decisions against. it becomes a play book of sorts.
i mention the project for the flood warning devices as they engage a seemingly non-architectural aspect (warning systems) and turn it into a poetic device....i think this sort of thinking also surrounds the Safe(r) takes a prosaic reality and turns it into a poetic stance about how architecture interacts with the natural world.....that's what will allow the project to get beyond the level of just meeting basic utility.....which is necessary for a thesis project...
it's a great project to undertake. just don't expect your professors to be extremely helpful all the time, these types of projects are very difficult to get good criticism on, as it's very difficult to undertake this type of project and get beyond the utility aspects because they are so crucial. keep focussed on what needs to be done...
i think you'll have a great project.

Aug 13, 07 11:24 am

thank you futureboy,its true the lecturers are not being of much help.they insist its better to take up a post tsunami reconstruction since it makes much more of a better reason to justify my site.
i cant wait to get in touch with the local afh people here,and start off on this project.
providing the most economic and sustainable dwelling spaces for the affected is basically the main objective as of now..

Aug 14, 07 7:55 am

runawaygirl - have you thought about attacking the issue of shelters? Particularly their pre-disaster function. It could be a playful yet useful development.

Aug 14, 07 8:03 am

runawaygirl, I emailed you purnimas' address. we might even have an opportunity for you to work on one of our projects (a rural women's cooperative).

Also go online and check out our implementing partner LEAD - League of Education and Development. They are an affiliate partner of the Barefoot College w/ Bunker Roy.


Aug 14, 07 12:26 pm
doot .

runawaygirl :
im currently workin with a german NGO in Aceh (indonesia) for post-tsunami rehab and recons..
i also had this as my topic for my udergrad paper.

i didnt find this field very architectural tho.. it's more related with urban planning than architecture..
now that the relief phase has ended, there are less barracks and temporary shelter, more on the physical reconstruction : houses, schools, infrastructure etc.

nevertheless, if u need any help about this topic, i'd be glad to help.

Aug 15, 07 1:36 am

i will be adressing the shelter has to be prepared for any further such disasters unlike the previous time.
although flood levels are normally specified in these coastal places,people still go ahead and build it..taking the possibility of floods quite casually and the government has not been doing much to avoid it.

Aug 15, 07 4:32 am

i have contacted them,a live project would be definitely useful.i shall go down to chennai in two days and try meeting with them.

Aug 15, 07 4:37 am

doot. ,
i agree it is rather urban planning related,but as we get down to design these places,does it not become purely architecture?we're providing them a space to live in,in the most sustainable way....and also resisting the natural forces having an adverse affect on the built forms and using it for the people's benefit instead.
what exactly were your main concerns during your undergrad?and the scale of the project?

Aug 15, 07 4:41 am

I disagree that it is all urban planning. However I am coming from a bias point of view. In sri lanka the UN Habitat had urban planners but zero architects on their projects. In teaming up with them we provided architectural services, leveraging construction costs to make sure the design was not compromised.

In India, as you will see runawaygirl, we built the community structures as anchors in villages. THey ended up being very architectural in scope, although some planning came into play during the initial development stage.


Aug 15, 07 9:49 am

yes,i went to the places hit by tsunami,its surprising even after two years things havent seemed to get any better for them.most of the houses they've been provided are completely inappropriate for the fishermen and they refuse to live in those.the lifestyle too is in a drastic need of improvement.

the problem is,most of my design lecturers are completely against this project,declaring it not of thesis level.god!

Sep 3, 07 7:49 am

If you need a letter of support to partition your dean or want me to email directly just let me know. Perhaps if the project is framed in a way they might understand then it would be accepted.

ie. Models of sustainable long term reconstruction and the opportunity of integrating disaster mitigation in flood prone areas.

Sep 3, 07 12:46 pm

yes cameron,you're really been very helpful.....but i have to handle this by my own.i think im even getting thru to them all :)

Sep 12, 07 10:38 am


my thesis topic also same as can study "The Raised Settlement" by Kashef Chowdhury in Bangladesh.

I got this only but i'm looking for more references,so I'd appreciate if you could help me out with any other references.


hey ..

im starting my thesis in a while.and i want to do it on disaster relief in India (uttarakhand).

would really appreciate some help if any of you guys have done something similar to this before...

Dec 25, 16 12:16 am

I'm an architecture student and my thesis topic will focus on the people affected by disasters and measures that can be taken before disasters i.e.disaster preparedne

ss. I'm designing a disaster mitigation centre which will provide a place for people(local communities, architects, engineers) to come and prepare the various alternative form of shelters and also teach the local people so that they can be prepared during disasters and help others. I'm looking for any kind of help you can provide also I'm aiming at Orissa cyclones so if you have any idea of an appropriate site for this it would be really helpful to me.

Jul 31, 18 4:32 pm
Superfluous Squirrel

Check out the disaster management cycle, it'll probably help. originally here. described better elsewhere, just google it.

Cyclones aren't that difficult to design for. Theres strong wind, debris, and a storm surge, but these 3 are pretty easily solved. Don't build too low, and put in hurricane shutters or windows. 

Jul 31, 18 11:13 pm


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