1990: Disaster Research Unit established in the Department of Geography, Faculty of Arts under the leadership of Dr. John Rogge.
In the first few years, the DRU focused on a number of international disaster related issues including involuntary migration caused by to natural disasters in Bangladesh and impacts of hurricanes in Caribbean Islands.
1994: the Disaster Research Unit was elevated to the Disaster Research Institute (DRI).
Professor Tom Booth, Department of Botany, Prof. Raymond Wiest, Department of Anthropology, Prof. Gustav Stevenson (Now Dean of Human Ecology), Dr. Bob Tait (who later became the Dean of Graduate Studies at the University of Northern British Columbia) were among the most active members of the DRI.
1995: Dr. John Rogge was appointed the Director for a 4-year term from July 1.
1996: Dr. Bob Tait became the Interim Director on November 1.
1997: Dr. John Rogge left DRI with a United Nations job and Dr. Bob Tait became the Director of DRI. He led several studies during the 1997 flood in the Red River Valley. Several PhD and masters students graduated under DRI sponsored funding.
1998: Dr. Dave Babar became the Director of DRI.