Episode 18: Holistic Disaster Resilience featuring Bangkok

Feb 2024

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About This Episode

Lauren Sorkin welcomes Dr. Tavida Kamolvej, Deputy Governor of the City of Bangkok for a conversation on her role and leadership in the city’s disaster risk and resilience approach. Like many cities around the world, Bangkok’s road to recovery after the Covid-19 pandemic has been a challenging one. Dr. Tavida takes us through the city’s projects and programs focusing on building capacity in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) which are crucial to the city’s robust economy. Learn more about Bangkok’s initiatives for re-training, re-skilling and upskilling their local communities, promoting their value and empowering all age groups in career development. Don’t miss it!

The Speakers

Dr. Tavida Kamolvej

Lauren Sorkin

About Dr. Tavida Kamolvej

Associate Professor Dr. Tavida Kamolvej currently serves as the Deputy Governor of Bangkok in charge of Strategic and Human Resource Management, Disaster Prevention and Mitigation, Public Health and Medical Service, Environmental Sanitation of Bangkok. Under her supervision includes Navamindradhiraj University, and North Bangkok District Zone.

Prior to this, Dr. Tavida was an associate professor of Public Policy and Administration at the Faculty of Political Science, Thammasat University, Thailand, for 24 years, and served the deanship from 2018 to May 2022.

Dr. Tavida had her practices serving as disaster risk reduction and emergency management advisor to Thailand Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation, Ministry of Interior, and last served as the National Board of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation of Thailand.

Dr. Tavida also had her works with various UN Agencies namely UNESCO, UNDP, UNDRR, and US agencies namely USTDA and USAID. Other areas of her expertise includes Policy and Strategic Analyst for Thailand Public Agencies such as Ministry of Public Health, Department of Mineral Resource, and Bangkok Metropolitan Authority.

Her last appointments were with the Open Government and Participation Subcommittee for the Office of the Public Sector Development Commission, and Policy Innovation Assessor to the National Innovation Agency, Thailand.

Dr. Tavida received her Bachelor of Political Science (First Class Honors) and Master of Political Science from Thammasat University, Thailand, Graduate Certificate in Public Management (GCPM) from the School of Social Sciences, University of South Florida, USA, and Doctor of Philosophy in Public Administration and Public Policy (Fulbright Scholarship), School of Public and International Affairs, University of Pittsburgh, USA.

About Lauren Sorkin

As Executive Director of the Resilient Cities Network, Lauren oversees global efforts to strengthen cities in the face of the complex and interconnected challenges they face. Leading a Team of professionals in Mexico City, New York, Rotterdam and Singapore in collaboration with Chief Resilience Officers in more than 40 countries, she drove the co-design process to launch Global Resilient Cities Network as an independent city-led network organization. 

Lauren serves as an advisor and spokesperson on urban resilience, women’s leadership sustainable finance, climate risk, stakeholder engagement, and urbanization trends. She is on the Advisory Board of several sustainability focused initiatives including Food Tank, the Singapore Sustainability Summit (S3), and Natural Capital.

Previously with the Asian Development Bank, Lauren led the Bank’s first ever climate change investment plan before moving to the ADB’s Vietnam Office to mainstream climate risks and opportunities in the country’s US$7 billion portfolio. Before joining the ADB, she worked with USAID to implement clean energy, climate change and conservation projects in Asia, Africa and South America. She has published work on biofuels, climate change, public speaking for social impact, infant mortality and HIV/AIDS.

Lauren holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from Tufts University and a Master of Science in Environment and Development from the London School of Economics. She lives in Singapore with her husband and two daughters where she can be found practicing contemporary dance, yoga and singing while working towards a better future.

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