Disaster risk reduction in rural Africa can contribute to reducing poverty and food insecurity if included in local development plans (LDPs). Five years after the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), we do not know how much risk reduction is practiced in rural Africa. The aim of this assessment is to ascertain the state of mainstreaming DRR in development planning in the rural jurisdictions of tropical Africa. One hundred and ninety-four plans of 21 countries are considered. Ten characteristics of the plans are examined: Climate trends, hydro-climatic hazards, vulnerability and risk assessments, alignment with Sendai Framework, vision, strategies and objectives, DRR actions, internal consistency, DRR relevance and funding sources, local and technical knowledge integration, public participation. It is found that local climatic characterization is almost always absent and risk reduction is an objective of the plans in one case out of three. Prevention actions prevail over those of preparedness. There is poor participation in the plan preparation process and this limits the implementation of the actions. A modification of the national guidelines on the preparation of LDPs, the orientation of official development assistance towards supporting climate services and the training of local planners, together with the increase of financial resources in local jurisdictions are essential for improving DRR at local scale.
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