Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction (IRDR)

Top reasons to study here

  • Rapidly growing trans-disciplinary PhD research centre.
  • Integrative masters teaching, programme of public events and partnerships with humanitarian, financial, research and civil protection organisations.
  • We aim to maximise the impact and value of UCL activities and to increase and enhance cross-disciplinary collaboration and cooperation globally.

Master's Programmes

Applied Sciences & Professions (4)
Business & Management (4)
Environmental Studies & Earth Sciences (1)
Social Sciences (1)



We currently have 12 academic staff, 2 of whom are 2 jointly appointed with other departments, (Statistical Science and the Institute for Global Health) and 5 members of professional services staff. The IRDR has a PhD population of over 20 (about 1/2 of the students are international students) and runs 3 Masters programmes with about 80 students. In 2021 we are launching our new undergraduate programme, BSc Global Humanitarian Studies.


IRDR's research focus's in quantifying and reducing the risk of: natural, technological, socio-economic and intentional disasters. These areas of great concern to humanity are monitored and evaluated as their impact is increasing due to climate change, population growth and globalization.

Risk society

  • public perception of risk
  • how diverse societies deal with disaster

Understanding natural hazards: Geological and meteorological

  • field and satellite observations
  • laboratory simulations
  • computational and statistical modelling

Understanding health risks and pandemics

  • digital public health in emergencies
  • transmission characteristics of infectious agents
  • epidemiology of pandemics
  • space health risks


The global challenge of understanding risk, increasing resilience and reducing exposure to hazards has generated demand for a new type of professionals who can work across boundaries in every sector.Based in central London, at the heart of the international hub for global finance, risk management and humanitarian response, UCL IRDR educates students to meet the growing need for experts trained in disaster risk reduction from industry, consultancies, governments and NGOs.

Global Student Satisfaction Awards 2021

GSSA 2021

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City of London, England, United Kingdom

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