The Expert Committee of the Cultural Heritage Disaster Risk Mitigation Network (CH-DRM Net) was established in order to solicit expertise on building a cultural heritage disaster risk mitigation network from professionals involved in cultural heritage disaster risk mitigation, salvage, and related areas and those who possess extensive academic experience on related issues. Currently, the Expert Committee is composed of 19 individuals who meet twice per year.
The National Task Force for CH-DRM Net proactively publicizes and promotes participation in debriefings, research projects, information sharing sessions, and regional networking meetings in various localities around Japan to prefectural and municipal administrative departments; representatives of consortiums or institutions such as museums, libraries, and archives; and regional historical record networks and related organizations. Members work proactively with the various regions of the country to develop networks in order that, if a disaster occurs, information on the status of disaster-caused damage will be shared promptly. In fiscal 2016, Task Force members visited 20 prefectures.
Local Disaster Management Plans for each prefecture, which are based on the Basic Act on Disaster Control Measures, contain provisions on ”Cultural Heritage Disaster Risk Mitigation”; however, because the circumstances in each prefecture differ, these plans have not always adequately reflected the specific realities of each locality. The National Task Force for CH-DRM Net has aimed to contribute to regional cultural heritage disaster risk management by incorporating the results of Task Force research into the revisions of these Local Disaster Management Plans that have been carried out following the Great East Japan Earthquake. It has also highlighted cultural heritage-related provisions by rewriting them as independent clauses in these plans. The Task Force has also recommended specific standards for the development of organizational frameworks in non-disaster situations and for initial responses after a disaster occurs.
The Historical Materials Networks (Shiryō Net) in each region are comprised primarily of experts from universities, museums, and archives who research regional historical documents and archives. At the time of natural disasters, these networks are able to mobilize quickly to carry out salvage activities by utilizing their preexisting relationships with the owners of historical materials.
CH-DRM Net cosponsors National Historical Materials Networks Conferences together with Historical Materials Networks from each region, thereby facilitating and promoting regional disaster risk mitigation and salvage efforts.
The Task Force is considering how to secure temporary storage facilities as well as freezer storage facilities for use when cultural heritage is damaged in natural disasters. Such measures must take into consideration the specific conditions of each local region. The Task Force is also reviewing in conjunction with related companies ways to secure the shipping and transport needed for the speedy evacuation of cultural heritage.