India was chosen as the location for the first TechEmerge Resilience initiative, conducted in partnership with the World Bank. India has made great progress in proactive disaster preparedness and risk reduction, but it remains vulnerable to floods, cyclones, and other natural disasters. Now COVID-19 has made the vital work of disaster agencies and frontline workers even more challenging.


Strategic Objectives

natural disasters Strengthen the preparedness and resilience of all Indian communities and infrastructure to natural disasters, including climate-related events.
disaster management Support India’s national, state, and district Disaster Management Authorities (DMAs) to prepare for and respond to disasters, while conforming to measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. 


Why Resilience?

Since 1980, more than two million people and over $3 trillion have been lost to natural disasters worldwide. These disasters hurt the poor and vulnerable the most, with more than 90 percent of storm-related fatalities concentrated in low and middle-income countries, even though they experienced just 32% of storms. Natural disasters are worsening with climate change, and now COVID-19 has exacerbated the challenges of responding to these life-threatening events. 

TechEmerge is working to pilot and scale innovative, affordable, and accessible technologies that help countries and communities better prepare, respond, and build long-term resilience to disasters and climate change, and strengthen response capacities in the time of COVID-19. 


1.37 bn

India has 17% of the world’s population

$8.2 bn

Direct losses from natural disasters in India over the past 20 years


Global economic losses from climate-related disasters over 20 years

The TechEmerge Resilience Program in India is a partnership of the World Bank, IFC, the Consumer Technology Association, and the Government of India’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).  Ten pilots are underway to strengthen disaster resilience in the time of COVID-19, leveraging AI, drones, IoT, as well as wifi-connected radios to ensure information access to remote communities. The innovators—competitively selected from a field of more than 300 applicants worldwide—are conducting field tests in partnership with national, state, and district Disaster Management Authorities (DMAs). 

With support from the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), innovators have access to a total pool of $1 million in grant funding for pilot implementation, cloud credits and technical assistance from IBM, and technical and advisory support from the World Bank.