Welcome to Project Center on Natural Disaster Reduction website

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When a natural disaster research and education organization of high quality exists in a region, the effect of disaster reduction and prevention increases. In the Chugoku region, including the San-in area at the Japan Sea side, disasters caused by earthquake, landslides, and floods occurs frequently and they have a great impact on the local society.
Natural disasters generally have their localized characteristics. In the Chugoku region, populations are distributed on the wide and gentle mountainous areas. This makes disaster reduction and prevention different when compared with those in big cities located on very large alluvial plain.
To carry out disaster reduction and prevention effectively, it is necessary and pertinent to establish an organization in the Chugoku region, especially in the San-in area, (in collaboration with) crossing different disciplines and organizations. In addition, through cooperation with residents, administrations and the mass media in the local communities, the newly established organization can make great contribution to reduce and prevent natural disasters in the local society. Under this background, the Natural Disaster Reduction Project Center was established in Shimane University on 28 December 2012.

Management and Administration Regime

Local experts on natural disasters will be invited to join the Management Committee to supervise the activity of the project center.
A director (who also works as the secretary general, organizes emergency response to natural disaster sites, and handles the daily affairs of the project center), deputy director, and heads of research and education departments manage the center.
To effectively make use of external research resources, such as disaster researchers in private companies, cooperate research system is introduced.

Director: Fawu WANG (Interdisciplinary Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Deputy-Director: Ikuo TASAKA (Faculty of Law & Literature)

Main Purposes and Activities

1) Conduct investigations, recordings, and research on natural disasters in Chugoku region, especially in the San-in area

● Set up a disaster database for the San-in area, and build a maintenance, management and viewing system.

2) Clarify the mechanism of disasters through cooperation with domestic and international experts on natural disasters

● Conduct disaster research not only locally, but also internationally. Organize international symposiums which form a core for information exchange.system.

3) Launch a new education subject related to community disaster prevention for all university students, and conduct international education for disaster reduction and prevention

● Open summer school for natural disaster learning, and research courses for international students.

4) Cooperate with the local community and contribute to community disaster prevention

● Organize symposiums, seminars and field trips related to natural disasters for the local community, and increase the community’s resilience; conduct independent investigation and research on local disaster problems, and make propositions to local government.

Divisions and Members

Director of PCNDR: Prof. Fawu WANG
Deputy Director: Prof. Ikuo TASAKA

1. Earthquake, Volcano and Tsunami Disaster Division

Research on historical disasters from earthquakes, volcanic activity, and tsunamis in the San-in region, based on sedimentological, paleontological and geochemical approaches.

Director: Hiroki HAYASHI (Associate Professor) Research on seismic geology and historical earthquakes in the San-in region
Hiroaki ISHIGA (Professor) Tsunami disasters around the world
Toshiaki IRIZUKI (Professor) Marine micropaleontology of tsunami deposits
Tetsuya SAKAI (Professor) Sedimentology of tsunami deposits
Andreas AUER (Lecturer) Volcanology; types of volcanic eruptions and related hazards; structures and field relationships of volcanic deposits, petrology of igneous and pyroclastic rocks.
Miki TASAKA (Lecturer) Mantle deformation related to earthquake and volcanic activities
Hideki MUKOYOSHI (Assistant Professor) Study of the distribution and evolution process of fault zones
Yoshihiro SAWADA (Emeritus Professor) Volcanic history, slope disasters due to collapses of volcanic bodies

2. Meteorology and Flood Disaster Division

The first aim of our study is to clarify the mechanisms of occurrence of heavy rainfall events in the San-in region, by investigation of records of heavy rainfall disasters in the area. The second aim is to prepare hazard maps for urban areas in the San-in region, for immediate evacuation in the hour of peril associated with heavy rainfall. The third aim is to solve problems of pollution in underground waters and in the water environment.

Director: Ikuo TASAKA (Professor) Study of the mechanisms of occurrence of heavy rainfall
Masayuki ISHII (Associate Professor) Disasters in hilly and mountainous areas and their reduction
Kiyoshi MASUMOTO (Associate Professor) Groundwater pollution due to mine drainage, aqueous environmental problems
Hirokazu SATO (Assistant Professor) Reduction of excessive flood damage
Masahisa HAYASHI (Emeritus Professor) Flood disasters in the San-in region, including Matsue City

3. Landslide and Geo-disaster Division

The mechanisms of landslides and other geo-disasters triggered by earthquakes and rainfall are studied in this division. The occurrence of landslide and geo-disasters mainly depends on geological conditions, and thus it is important to study the strength and deformation behavior of rock mass and soils.

Director: Fawu WANG (Professor) Landslides triggered by earthquakes or rainfall, submarine landslides, debris flows transformed from mountain collapse, rockfalls, and landslide dams
Atsushi KAMEI (Professor) Granitoid petrogenesis, chemical analysis of weathered rocks
Shunsuke ENDO (Lecturer) Structural and petrological factors contributing to geo-disasters
Toshihide SHIBI (Assistant Professor) Deformation of soft ground, phenomena of liquefaction, failure of landslide dams, and other such research
Tetsuya KOGURE (Assistant Professor) Mechanism of landslides and surface failures, monitoring of slope deformation
Zili DAI (Project Assistant Professor) Areal prediction of landslide
Shuichiro YOKOTA (Emeritus Professor) Studies of the weathering process of rocks and rock mass, landslide disasters

4. Research Division on Earthquake Resistance of Buildings

Under construction

Director: Kiichiro SAWADA (Professor) Seismic design of buildings, especially steel structures
Shigefumi OKAMOTO (Lecturer) Research on the seismic performance of wooden buildings

5. Research Division on Disaster-related Laws

Under construction

Director: Atsunori Isomura (Professor) Under construction
Masanori Nagamatsu (Associate Professor) Under construction

6. Disaster Prevention Education Division

This division aims to promote the ability of disaster prevention and reduction in local communities, through lectures, forums and discussions with residents about natural disasters. We also make international contributions by cultivating human resources through education to foreign students.

Director: Hiroaki ISHIGA (Professor) Construction of framework for international education on natural disasters
Ichiro MATSUMOTO (Professor) Under construction

7. Cooperating Research Fellows and Researchers

Cooperating Research Fellows
Kaoru AZUKIZAWA E. Kyouritsu Co., Ltd.
Osamu OSAKA Nihonkai Technical Consultants Co., Ltd.
Motoaki ODA Shimaken Consultant Co., Ltd.
Motoji NAGAMINE Dairyu Consulting Engineer Co.,Ltd.
Koichiro HANAMOTO WORLD survey and design Co., Ltd.
Akira HAMASAKI Nihonkai Technical Consultants Co., Ltd.
Yuji HARA Cosmo Construction Consultants Co., Ltd.
Kazuhiko FUKUI Wesco Co., Ltd.
Shunitsu FUJII Fujii Consulting & Associates
Hisashi MURAKAMI Cosmo Construction Consultants Co., Ltd.
Cooperating Researchers
Makoto INOUE Wesco Co., Ltd.
Tooru OMURA Cosmo Construction Consultants Co., Ltd.
Naoki KATAYAMA Nihonkai Technical Consultants Co., Ltd.
Tomoyuki KUNIKIYO WORLD survey and design Co., Ltd.
Ryuta SAITO Fujii Consulting & Associates
Seiji SAKATA Shimaken Consultant Co., Ltd.
Kenichi TAKESHI Nihonkai Technical Consultants Co., Ltd.
Masahiko HAMADA Dairyu Consulting Engineer Co.,Ltd.
Kenichi MAKIOKA E. Kyouritsu Co., Ltd.


1. Disaster investigations in the Chugoku district, particularly the San-in area

The Project Center on Natural Disaster Reduction (PCNDR) is striving to clarify the mechanisms by which disasters proceed, and carries out investigations of disasters when they occur in the whole neighborhood; such activities contribute to local disaster prevention. Furthermore, PCNDR is investigating past and present natural disasters in the San-in area, and is building a database of these events, and creating exhibits of such information.

2. Holding of the “San-in Disaster Prevention Forum”

Shimane University organizes the biannual “San-in Disaster Prevention Forum”, which is an opportunity for discussing the prevention and reduction of disaster in the San-in area. This forum is held in spring and autumn, with cooperation among industry, government, and academia.

3. International Organization Operation

Staffs in the project center are also involved in the executive bureau of the International Consortium on Geo-disaster Reduction (ICGdR). This consortium convenes a regular international conference, and publishes an international journal (Geoenvironmental Disasters) dedicated to the study and description of geoenvironmental disasters. This association with the ICGdR provides a valuable link for dissemination of the results of our project to an international audience.

4. Education of Disaster Prevention

Education in the prevention and reduction of natural disaster starts at Shimane University, in order to produce engineers with specialized knowledge and skills in these fields.

Research Outputs


Database of natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides and flooding in the San-in region, via Google Earth

Integrated results by all divisions

Research conducted in 2012-2013 by all divisions of the center (PDF: in Japanese)

Research by each division

1. Earthquake, Volcano and Tsunami Disaster Division

Geo-disasters database in the San-in region (PDF: in Japanese)

An integrated database of geo-disasters including landslides, slope failures and earthquakes in the San-in region was produced, using Geospatial Information System (GIS) software. The presentation layer of this database is developed for Google Earth, and is open for use on the Internet.

Database of Strong Earthquakes in Shimane Prefecture (PDF: in Japanese)

Report on tsunami deposit study (PDF: in Japanese)

The Tsunami research group has been searching for evidence of ancient tsunami attacks from sediment successions on coastal plains and in shallow bays, to uncover the history of tsunami hazard, and to evaluate inundation areas from ancient tsunami events in the Shimane and Tottori regions. Local enhancement of tsunami waves around Shimane Peninsula and on the northern coast of the Oki Islands has been revealed by a series of computer simulations, and by tsunami wave height data. This enhancement results from wave diffraction at the Yamato Bank, located in the central Japan Sea. This implies potential for future tsunami disasters in these regions. Several flow event beds that are suspected to be of tsunami origin have also been discovered at several locations along the San-in Coast.

Data base of tsunami invasions in Shimane and Tottori regions (PDF: in Japanese)

Several descriptions of tsunami invasions are available in historical records. Tsunami waves with run-up heights of approximately 3 m were observed in Shimane Peninsula and the Oki Islands, in several tsunami events propagated in the eastern Japan Sea.

2. Meteorology and Flood Disaster Division

Visualization of microtopographical classification of plain fields in the San-in region (PDF: in Japanese)

Additional Figure (PDF: in Japanese)

List of Meteorological Disasters in the San-in region (PDF: in Japanese)

This list shows the date (period, season), the disaster type, damage area (Shimane Prefecture and/or Tottori Prefecture), the main damage, and the data sources of meteorological disasters occurring in the San-in region between 567 A.D. and 2008.

3. Landslide and Geo-disasters Division

Designated landslide areas in Shimane Prefecture (PDF: in Japanese)

More than 400 landslide areas have been designated in Shimane Prefecture by the former Ministry of Construction (currently the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism), the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, and the Forestry Agency of Japan. A database has been established to integrate all these landslide areas, using the Google Earth interface. New records of some recent landslide disasters and related information such as rainfall have also been included.

Landslides in San-in region (PDF: in Japanese)

This is the book listed below. It contains information on the landslides occurring in the San-in region (Shimane and Tottori prefectures), including distribution and geological maps, mechanisms of occurrence, countermeasure works, and other data.



Japan Landslide Society (2013) Landslides in San-in region (Editor-in-Chief: Wang FW). 248p.


Sakai T, Furukawa A, Kawano S (2013) Stepwise environmental changes in the lower Miocene Koura Formation, southwest Japan, associated with Japan Sea evolution. Journal of the Geological Society of Japan, 119(4), 285–299.

Sakai T, Maruyama M (2013) Gravity flow and submarine slide deposits in the Miocene Ushikiri Formation, Eastern Shimane, Japan. Journal of the Sedimentological Society of Japan, 72, 2.

Shinmitsu R, Araiba K, Wang FW, Kuwata Y, Endo M (2014) The heavy rainfall disasters at the boundary between Yamaguchi and Shimane Prefectures on 28 July 2013. Bulletin of Shimane Prefectural Geo-Society, Vol.29, 35-38.

Wang FW, Kuwata Y, Shinmitsu R, Tasaka I, Araiba K, Endo M (2014) Landslides triggered by the heavy rainfall at the boundary between Yamaguchi and Shimane Prefectures in July 2013. Journal of Japan Landslide Society, Vol.51, No.2,25-28.


Wang FW (2013) Using chain array of micro-tremor to detect inner structure of landslide dam for piping risk evaluation. 11-MGDA, Nepal.

Do Ngoc H, Wang FW (2013) Mechanical characteristics of the August 6,2012 Mihata Landslide, Shimane, Japan. 11-MGDA, Nepal.

Faris F, Wang FW (2013) Investigation on failure mechanism of earthquake induced landslide during rainfall: case study in of Tandikat landslide, west Sumatra Indonesia. 11-MGDA, Nepal.

Kuwata Y (2013) Case study on landslides triggered by heavy rainfalls between the boundary of Yamaguchi and Shimane Prefectures in 2013. Investigation Conference on 2013 Landslides and Debris Flows, Japan Landslide Society, Tokyo.

  • 島根大学法文学部
  • 島根大学教育学部
  • 島根大学大学院総合理工学研究科
  • 島根大学生物資源科学部・生物資源科学研究科
  • 国立大学法人島根大学
  • 島根大学COCプロジェクト
  • 内閣府
  • 国連自然災害軽減戦略