Dr. Irwin Redlener

Senior Advisor, National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP), Columbia Climate School

Affiliated with: National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP)

Founding Director, National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Columbia University
Adjunct Senior Research Scholar, School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University
Cofounder, Ukraine Children's Action Project

475 Riverside Drive, Suite 401
New York, NY 10115-0095


Dr. Redlener co-founded the non-profit Ukraine Children’s Action Project in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. UCAP supports more than 25 projects that support children affected by the war.

He is also a Senior Advisor for the National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP), Columbia Climate School, at Columbia University, which works to understand and improve the nation’s capacity to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters. Dr. Redlener founded NCDP in 2003 and served as its director from 2003-2020. He is a nationally recognized expert on disaster preparedness policies, pandemic influenza, the threat of terrorism in the U.S., the impact and consequences of major natural disasters, and related issues.

Dr. Redlener is the author of The Future of Us: What the Dreams of Children Mean for Twenty-First-Century America, which earned the 2020 Gold Nautilus Book Award. He is also the author of Americans At Risk: Why We Are Not Prepared For Megadisasters and What We Can Do Now. Previously, he served as one of the ten members of the congressionally established National Commission on Children and Disasters.

He also serves as a regular Public Health Analyst for MSNBC programs such as The Deadline White House with Nicolle Wallace, Katy Tur, and more. Dr. Redlener is also a regular contributor of opinion articles for a range of national publications on issues ranging from COVID-19 and public health to children and disaster management.

Dr. Redlener is also President Emeritus and Co-Founder, along with singer-songwriter Paul Simon and Karen Redlener, of the Children’s Health Fund (CHF), a philanthropic initiative created to develop health care programs in some of the nation’s most medically underserved communities. CHF programs are now active in 25 urban and rural communities around the U.S., providing quality comprehensive medical care to more than 100,000 children each year. Dr. Redlener holds an M.D. degree from the University of Miami School of Medicine, an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Hunter College of the City University of New York, and an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Hofstra University.



Only select projects listed below
Name Start Date End Date
Foster Resilience Project 1/1/18 1/1/20
Program on Child Well-being and Resilience 6/30/14 6/30/17
Children as Bellwethers of Recovery: Establishing a Child-Centric Disaster Recovery Index 1/1/20 12/31/21


Only select publications listed below
Name Published Date
Fourteen Months into the Covid-19 Pandemic: What We Miss the Most 2021
Chronic Disease After Natural Disasters: Public Health, Policy, and Provider Perspectives 2018
Missed opportunities: Do states require screening of children for health conditions that interfere with learning? 2018
Regions Respond to Catastrophes 2017
Acts of terrorism and mass violence targeting schools : Analysis and implications for preparedness in the USA 2016
Anger Versus Fear: Perceptions of Terrorism Among the American Public 2016
Children in Disasters: Do Americans Feel Prepared? A National Survey 2016
Schools and Terrorism: Global Trends, Impacts, and Lessons for Resilience 2016
The American Preparedness Project: Where the US Public Stands in 2015 2016
Climate Change and Health on the U.S. Gulf Coast: Public Health Adaptation is Needed to Address Future Risks 2015
Disaster Prepared: How Federal Funding in the United States Supports Health System and Public Health Readiness 2015
The Medical Home and Care Coordination in Disaster Recovery: Hypothesis for Interventions and Research 2015
Children’s Health after the Oil Spill: A Four-State Study Findings from the Gulf Coast Population Impact (GCPI) Project 2013
Hurricane Sandy: Lessons Learned, Again 2013
Lessons from Sandy — Preparing Health Systems for Future Disasters 2012
Domestic preparedness cuts in the current federal budget threaten infrastructure gains and public health preparedness 2011
Health care system planning for and response to a nuclear detonation 2011
Rural and suburban population surge following detonation of an improvised nuclear device: A new model to estimate impact 2011
Children as Bellwethers of Recovery: Dysfunctional Systems and the Effects of Parents, Households, and Neighborhoods on Serious Emotional Disturbance in Children After Hurricane Katrina 2010
Climate Change and the Public's Health: The Coming Crisis for the U.S. Gulf Coast 2010
Day Three: Regional Resiliency and Health Challenges in the Aftermath of Nuclear Terrorism 2010
Impact on Children and Families of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Preliminary Findings of the Coastal Population Impact Study 2010
Recovery Research, Katrina's Fifth Anniversary, and Lessons Relearned 2010
Regional Health and Public Health Preparedness for Nuclear Terrorism: Optimizing Survival in a Low Probability/High Consequence Disaster 2010
Mitigating absenteeism in hospital workers during a pandemic 2009
Pediatric Emergency Preparedness for Natural Disasters, Terrorism, and Public Health Emergencies: A National Consensus Conference: 2009 Update 2009
The Future of Pediatric Preparedness 2009
Lessons from Katrina – What Went Wrong, What Was Learned, Who’s Most Vulnerable 2008
Population Vulnerabilities, Preconditions, and the Consequences of Disasters 2008
Prevalence and Predictors of Mental Health Distress Post-Katrina: Findings From the Gulf Coast Child and Family Health Study 2008
The 2008 American Preparedness Project: Why Parents May Not Heed Evacuation Orders and What Emergency Planners, Families and Schools Need to Know 2008
Are We Ready Yet to Deal with Large-Scale Disasters? 2007
Children and Megadisasters: Lessons Learned in the New Millennium 2007
Emergency Preparedness: Addressing the Needs of Persons with Disabilities 2007
Establishing Permanent Mental Health Programs Post-Hurricane Katrina: Lessons Learned and Recommendations for Practice in Underserved Communities Impacted by Mass Trauma 2007
Mississippi Child and Family Health Study — Toplines 2007
Pediatric Preparedness for Disasters, Terrorism and Public Health Emergencies: A National Consensus Conference: Executive Summary and Final Report 2007
Public Health Disaster Research: Surveying the Field, Defining its Future 2007
Safer Schools in an Age of Mass Violence: Back to the Basics of Public Health 2007
The American Preparedness Project: Where the US Public Stands in 2007 on Terrorism, Security, and Disaster Preparedness 2007
The Legacy of Katrina's Children: Estimating the Numbers of Hurricane-Related At-Risk Children in the Gulf Coast States of Louisiana and Mississippi 2007
The New York City Principals Pandemic Flu Survey: Are Schools Prepared? 2007
The Recovery Divide: Poverty and the Widening Gap Among Mississippi Children and Families Affected by Hurricane Katrina 2007
The Recovery Divide: Poverty and the Widening Gap Among Mississippi Children and Families Affected by Hurricane Katrina: Executive Summary 2007
Bioterrorism 2006
Chronicles From Out-of-State Professionals: Providing Primary Care to Underserved Children After a Disaster: A National Organization Response 2006
Critical Concepts for Children in Disasters Identified by Hands-on Professionals: Summary of Issues Demanding Solutions Before the Next One 2006
Ethical and Legal Challenges Posed by mandatory Hurricane Evacuation: Duties and Limits 2006
Homeland Preparedness for Major Terrorism in 2006: Not Yet Ready for Prime Time 2006
Life under the "new normal": notes on the future of preparedness 2006
National Preparedness Planning: The Historical Context and Current State of the U.S. Public's Readiness, 1940-2005 2006
Partnership for Preparedness: A Model of Academic Public Health 2006
Pediatricians Providing Sophisticated Care Under Extreme Conditions 2006
Responding to an Emerging Humanitarian Crisis in Louisiana and Mississippi: Urgent Need for Health Care "Marshall Plan" 2006
The Pediatrician and Disaster Preparedness 2006
Are our children terrorist targets? 2005
Children as Potential Targets of Terrorism: Conference Report 2005
Children in a Post-9/11 World 2005
Homelessness and its Consequences 2005
Katrina, Rita, and the Failure of Imagination 2005
Preparing for disasters: What should you know, and when should you know it? 2005
Preparing Health Professions Students for Terrorism, Disaster, and Public Health Emergencies: Core Competencies 2005
Snapshot 2005: Where the American Public Stands on Terrorism and Preparedness Four Years after September 11 2005
Terrorism and preparedness: What September 11 and its aftermath mean for physicians 2005
The Willingness of U.S. Emergency Medical Technicians to Respond to Terrorist Incidents 2005
How Americans Feel About Terrorism and Security: Three Years After September 11 2004
Pediatric Terrorism Preparedness National Guidelines and Recommendations: Findings of an Evidenced-based Consensus Process 2004
Preparedness—A Reminder for the Public 2004
Uncommon Sense, Uncommon Courage: How the New York City School System, Its Teachers, Leadership and Students Responded to the Terror of September 11 2004
Disaster and Terrorism Preparedness: What Pediatricians Need To Know 2003
Homeless Women and Their Children in the 21st Century 2003
How Americans Feel About Terrorism And Security: Two Years After 9/11 2003
Pediatric Preparedness for Disasters and Terrorism: A National Consensus Conference: Executive Summary 2003
The 9/11 terror attacks: Emotional consequences persist for children and their families 2002
Access Denied: Taking Action for Medically Underserved Children 1998
Constructive Conflict Management and Coping in Homeless Children Adolescents 1994
System-based Mobile Primary Pediatric Care for Homeless Children: The Anatomy of a Working Program 1994
The Homeless Child Health Care Inventory: Assessing the Efficacy of Linkages to Primary Care 1994
Overcoming barriers to health care access for medically underserved children 1993