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Earthquakes, tornadoes, monsoons, hurricanes, flooding, and other severe natural disasters have brought alarming devastation to regions around the world over the past several years. As the human, financial, and ecological toll of these successive events continue, business continuity, disaster recovery (BC/DR), and risk managers want to know what they can learn from these events that can help them better prepare for future disasters. In this report, we use the March 2011 earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan to illustrate a series of lessons for risk managers around the world. We use the Japanese crisis as our example, not because Japan was ill prepared -- in fact, experts have long hailed Japan for its emergency preparedness, and this event supported these claims -- but because the scale and magnitude of the disaster gives us the opportunity to highlight a wide range of ways to strengthen your organization's resilience with improvements to people, process, technology, and oversight. Apply these lessons to help prepare for any risk scenario, whether it's extreme weather, a human-made event, or a pandemic.
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