CREATE Director Appointed to The World Economic Forum Global Council

USC member of the Economic Global Agenda Council will contribute to a group that seeks to lessen the impact of natural disasters and terrorism.

By Anna Cearley

Detlof von Winterfeldt, director of the USC-based National Center for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events (CREATE), will contribute his knowledge of disaster risk analysis as a recently appointed member of the World Economic Global Agenda Council.

Von Winterfeldt, a professor at the School of Policy, Planning, and Development and the Viterbi School of Engineering, is scheduled to attend the council’s inaugural summit in Dubai Nov. 7-9. His background in researching risk analysis of natural disasters and terrorism will be put to use as part of a group that focuses on ways to prevent and lessen the impact of such disasters.

Global Agenda councils are part of the World Economic Forum, an independent, international organization that seeks strategies that balance entrepreneurship with the global public interest. They are comprised of academics such as von Winterfeldt, as well as government and industry representatives.

The councils are formed of “the most innovative and relevant minds, for the purpose of advancing knowledge and collaboratively exploring solutions to the most important issues in the global arena," according to the World Economic Forum’s Web site. About 700 council members are focusing on 60 issues.

“It’s an honor to be named to this esteemed organization, and I look forward to sharing the knowledge that comes from my role as director of CREATE as well as from my independent and collaborative research of disasters that are both natural and man-made," he said. “Understanding how to prepare for and react to such disasters is critical in ensuring that lives are saved and structural damage is minimal in the event of future disasters."

As director of CREATE, von Winterfeldt oversees an interdisciplinary national research center based at USC and funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The center conducts research on risk and economic analysis in partnership with universities and research institutions around the country.