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The second edition of the Observatory Newsletter includes a number of contributions. The first article explores the question of internal migration and institutional weaknesses which exacerbated the effects of the earthquake of January 12 2010. It develops the idea that the disaster was not only natural but was also caused by the absence of planning over several decades, both in rural and urban areas.

The second article deals with the issue of rural housing reconstruction in terms of the choice between an emergency response which does not take cultural specificities into account and a more personalised response which is better adapted to rural ways of life.

The third article briefly presents the micro-zoning studies which have been launched since the earthquake. These aim to map risks in terms of geological factors.

The fourth article focuses on the lessons from cash transfer programmes implemented after the earthquake. The urban response led to the large-scale development of cash transfer programmes and new operational methods. The article refers to several reports published in recent months on this subject. Lastly, the fifth article refers to a collective study of the medical response in the first three months after the earthquake coordinated by the Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO).