Culture and disaster risk reduction: Lessons and opportunities

Jessica Mercer, J.C. Gaillard, Katherine Crowley, R Shannon, Bob Alexander, Simon Day, Julia Becker

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    37 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The value of physical science in mitigating the effects of environmental hazards is well acknowledged. Less acknowledged are the cultural influences affecting adoption of disaster risk reduction strategies, that is what influence ‘culture’ has upon hazard and risk. This paper explores the need to consider ‘culture’ within disaster risk reduction and cross disciplinary boundaries through four key questions: (a) How relevant is ‘culture’ to disaster risk reduction? (b) How can we engage with different cultures? (c) How can local knowledge be accessed and utilized? (d) How can local and scientific knowledge be integrated for the benefit of disaster risk reduction? The questions are answered through drawing upon case study snapshots from Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, USA and the Maldives that explore geological-related hazard phenomena, including earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis, and their effects within communities. Challenges and ways forward for ensuring the integration of cultural considerations into risk reduction and putting research into practice and practice into research are identified.
    LanguageEnglish
    Pages74-95
    JournalEnvironmental Hazards
    Volume11
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2012

    Fingerprint

    disaster
    earthquake phenomena
    hazard
    cultural influence
    physical science
    environmental hazard
    traditional knowledge
    tsunami
    volcano
    risk reduction
    effect

    Keywords

    • culture, disaster risk reduction, hazards, local knowledge, risk, scientific knowledge

    Cite this

    Mercer, J., Gaillard, J. C., Crowley, K., Shannon, R., Alexander, B., Day, S., & Becker, J. (2012). Culture and disaster risk reduction: Lessons and opportunities. Environmental Hazards, 11(2), 74-95.
    Mercer, Jessica ; Gaillard, J.C. ; Crowley, Katherine ; Shannon, R ; Alexander, Bob ; Day, Simon ; Becker, Julia. / Culture and disaster risk reduction: Lessons and opportunities. In: Environmental Hazards. 2012 ; Vol. 11, No. 2. pp. 74-95.
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    Mercer, J, Gaillard, JC, Crowley, K, Shannon, R, Alexander, B, Day, S & Becker, J 2012, 'Culture and disaster risk reduction: Lessons and opportunities', Environmental Hazards, vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 74-95.

    Culture and disaster risk reduction: Lessons and opportunities. / Mercer, Jessica ; Gaillard, J.C.; Crowley, Katherine; Shannon, R; Alexander, Bob; Day, Simon; Becker, Julia.

    In: Environmental Hazards, Vol. 11, No. 2, 31.01.2012, p. 74-95.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    Mercer J, Gaillard JC, Crowley K, Shannon R, Alexander B, Day S et al. Culture and disaster risk reduction: Lessons and opportunities. Environmental Hazards. 2012 Jan 31;11(2):74-95.