Our Mission

The HATS mission is to build at the University of Arizona the institutional capacity to research, teach, and contribute to the urgent challenges of global disaster and humanitarian assistance. It seeks to establish the University as a recognized center of learning, knowledge production, and problem-solving relevant to the global effort to address disasters and promote resilience among the most vulnerable populations.

Managing and Responding to the Complex Challenges of Humanitarian Disasters to Make a Safer World

A host of natural and human-sourced shocks, from floods, droughts, tsunamis, and earthquakes to pandemics, conflict, violence, and economic collapse, increasingly destroy lives and undermines livelihoods worldwide. Advancing climate change threatens food insecurity, natural resource depletion, and environmental degradation, spurring social and political violence, demographic displacement, outmigration, and other consequences. Each crisis is unique in terms of its causes and the distribution of the impacts. The governmental and civil society organizations that provide humanitarian assistance depend upon relevant information and comprehensive strategies to anticipate such crises and enable recovery, particularly among vulnerable populations. HATS commits itself to this international effort through its experience and expertise. Through collaborative action among faculty and students, HATS defines a learning space to devise and disseminate innovative solutions to these global problems.

The HATS core team comprises three University of Arizona faculty who work as technical staff in the BHA at USAID. Their specialty areas include economic recovery, hydrometeorological hazards, and knowledge management. In addition, a diverse network of University of Arizona faculty forms a scholarly community of expertise and experience either in disaster management and humanitarian response or indirectly through related areas such as global health, climate change adaptation, food security, migration, human rights, and social justice. The day-to-day management of HATS is handled by a dedicated team of staff, graduate students, and interns.

Training the Next Generation

One of the HATS project's primary goals is to train the next generation of students to become tomorrow's leaders in disaster management and humanitarian assistance. We do this by linking students to our HATS Faculty Network. This network spans different departments and schools at the University of Arizona and aims to help educate students. Together we have developed a course list that enables undergraduate and graduate students to touch on many interdisciplinary subjects and connecting students with different resources.