As the Senior Disaster Risk Management Specialist in Indonesia, Iwan Gunawan coordinates the World Bank's portfolio on disaster and climate risk prevention, response, recovery, as well as post-disaster financing in the country. The Disaster Risk Management (DRM) team that he leads integrates disaster and climate-change risk reduction in development work, through building components and activities into relevant World Bank programs that would strengthen the project's resilience against catastrophes. Gunawan also leads a support program to boost the capacity of disaster management agencies at the national and sub-national level to manage disaster risks, through a combination of prevention, mitigation, effective response, sustainable recovery, and risk financing.
Among the DRM team's key interventions towards community resilience are: the National Community Empowerment Program, known by its Indonesian acronym PNPM (both the urban and rural program); the settlement rehabilitation and reconstruction in the area of Mount Merapi in Central Java, where more than 2,500 families have been resettled to areas less vulnerable to volcanic eruption; and the building of a new tsunami-resilient settlement in Mentawai Island in West Sumatra, expected to serve more than 2,000 families. These programs are part of the Bank's efforts to institutionalize capacity amongst government agencies and local communities, in order to reduce vulnerability to disasters, while at the same time addressing the inter-twined issues of land-use zoning and enforcement, infrastructure investment, management of urban growth, and climate change.
Iwan Gunawan is well seasoned in his field. His resume includes tenure at the United Nations Development Program and at ASEAN, as well as with the Government of Indonesia. Active in several civic movements on urban and environmental governance, Gunawan also continues to teach regional development, spatial planning, and natural resource management at the University of Indonesia, Bogor Agricultural University and Indonesia's National Defense University.
Iwan holds a Doctoral Degree in Regional Science/Geography from Texas' A&M University in the US, as well as a Master of Science in Engineering Science from Louisiana State University in the US, and a Bachelor's Degree in Geodetic Engineering from Gadjah Mada University, Indonesia.