Dr Rukhe Zehra Zaidi is an expert in risk management, resilience and preparedness for climate change and disaster emergencies. An active participant in various international policy forums such as the COP climate negotiations and the UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, she holds experience of facilitating several high-level workshops and lecturing at leading higher education institutes.
As an independent consultant, Dr Zaidi has provided expert analysis and strategic guidance for international and multi-stakeholder projects on sustainable practices, risk evaluation, climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction, and social vulnerability assessments.
At Italy’s Ca’ Foscari University, she promoted gender-based analysis and inclusion of women and at-risk groups in climate assessments at high-level policy forums such as SDGs, Sendai Framework, and COP meetings.
As a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellow at Italy’s Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change, Dr Zaidi won a grant for the European Commission-funded SMALLDIS project where she developed and implemented methodologies for measuring and mitigating social impacts of climate and disaster risk. She was also selected as Rapporteur to Sendai Framework Technical Working Group on Indicators (UNDRR) and member of EU Loss and Damage Group (DG ECHO).
At University College London, Dr Zaidi was the project lead for multi-stakeholder EU funded projects on climate change adaptation and disaster risk where she developed systems for analysing, predicting and preventing cascading risks and impacts during complex emergencies, and established cascading risk scenarios and business continuity strategies for government and civil protection organisations in Europe. She has also been a visiting lecturer at the university’s Center for Gender and Disasters.
At King’s College London, she was the lead researcher for several European (FP7, Horizon2020) and international projects on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction for which she assessed developed climate adaptation plans and disaster management policies for several national and city level governments in Europe and Latin America for multi-hazard risks.
Dr Zaidi has published 16 research articles and reports in peer-reviewed journals and international development publications on issues such as sustainability and climate change adaptation.
She has also undertaken several fellowships, including at the UN & Munich Re Foundation Risk Academy and Brown University International Advanced Research Institutes.