The news of Hurricane Gustav hitting the Louisiana coast, and reports of three more tropical storms/hurricanes that may make landfall in the continental United States brought to mind a publication in our collection called “Learning from Catastrophe: Quick Response Research in the Wake of Hurricane Katrina.”(available from our library: UCB6/57.2/L47/2006) The book is a special publication produced the Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado – Boulder. Sections on the culture of disaster, social vulnerability, disaster response, levees and land use, make interesting reading.
The Natural Hazards Center has the mission “to advance and communicate knowledge on hazards mitigation and disaster preparedness, response, and recovery.” They not only study planning and preparation for natural disasters, but also conduct research on terrorism. They have a large library of materials focusing on natural hazards and extreme events, which includes an online database called “HazLit.” Many of their publications are available for free on the Center website.
Take some time to browse through the Natural Hazards Center website (http://www.colorado.edu/hazards/), I think you will find it worth your while.