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The primary objective of our book is to refocus attention on the mitigation element of this enduring debate. The chapters in this edited volume grow out of our multiyear program entitled Nation on Edge. The purpose of this program was to draw together leading scholars and practitioners in a collective conversation on the subject of disaster mitigation; that is, on questions of how government can better manage private and public decisionmaking and can more effectively regulate the use of private property in order to curtail damage from inevitable disasters. Our book stands alongside the expanding collection of government reports, essays, and books concerned with “fixing” the holes in our systems of disaster relief and recovery.