Emergency crises have always tested our ability to organize and swiftly execute a coordinated response. Both natural and unnatural disasters pose new questions to which previous experience provides only limited answers. These challenges are arguably greater than ever, in a more globalized world confronted by a truly transnational hazard. This is the first volume that addresses the complexities of the volcanic ash cloud that overshadowed Europe in April 2011, but has subsequently struck again in Australia, Chile and Europe. It does so from a multidisciplinary perspective, drawing upon research from economics, law, sociology and other fields, as well as volcanology and leading expertise in jet engineering. While our knowledge base is wide-ranging, there is a common focus on the practical lessons of the ash cloud crisis both for subsequent eruptions and for emergency risk regulation more generally. Among many other insights Governing Disasters explains why it was that industry and regulators were largely unprepared for a phenomenon about which we were not scientifically ignorant. It concludes that the toolbox of risk regulation should not be expected to provide ready-made solutions but applied flexibly, creatively and with some humility. This unique and timely resource will be useful to policy makers, scholars, officials of international organizations, research institutions and consumer groups who want to acquire or further develop their capacities for risk regulation. For teaching purposes it is ideal for courses on risk regulation, disaster law and policy, and crisis management or as a supplement in courses on environmental law, transport law, space law or land use.