The work of the Hazards Planning Research Center advances communities that reduce the impact of natural hazards on the built environment.

Hazards Planning Research Center

Floods. Wildfires. Hurricanes. Landslides. Extreme temperature events. Terrorist attacks. Every community is faced with natural and man-made hazards that can best be addressed ahead of time by planners working closely with emergency management personnel to mitigate the threat and prepare for post-disaster recovery.

Through original and applied research, APA's Hazards Planning Research Center identifies practices that protect communities from natural and man-made hazards and educates planners and allied professionals about those practices.

Our mission is to support the development of safe, resilient communities that can both minimize their losses from disasters and quickly and efficiently marshal their resources afterwards to recover in ways that leave them stronger and better prepared than ever before.

Download the National Centers for Planning brochure (pdf)

Our work advances safer policies and planning practices through:


Working with a global network of research fellows and partner institutions, APA conducts collaborative, multidisciplinary research.


Through a variety of institutional partnerships and outreach activities, APA increases awareness of hazards and planning issues.


APA offers training and technical assistance for planners and allied professionals.


Local, state, and national public policy affects our natural and built environments.


From policy guides, reports and publications, to online courses and podcasts, APA has a variety of resources to assist planners.

About APA

APA is the premier independent, not-for-profit education and research organization devoted to urban, suburban, regional, and rural planning. Through serial publications, research monographs, online resources, and distance and face-to-face training, we reach frontline professionals and decision makers. With more than 40,000 members and established partnerships with numerous academic, nonprofit, and public institutions, APA is connected to the innovative thinking and the practical realities of the planning profession.

Safe Growth Audits

The October 2009 issue of Zoning Practice examines the need for communities to practice safe growth audits to prevent future growth conflicts.

Read the issue

Contact Us

APA's Hazards Planning Research Center has the expertise and influence to help planners and citizens create safer communities.

To learn how APA's Hazards Planning Research Center can help you or to discuss opportunities for research partnerships, contact APA at hazardsplanning@