Toward a policy-relevant hazard geography: Critical comments on geographic natural hazard research

Weichselgartner J (2003). Toward a policy-relevant hazard geography: Critical comments on geographic natural hazard research. Die Erde 134 (2): 181-192.

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Abstract

Despite greater scientific analysis of natural disasters, the global losses caused by natural hazards are increasing. This paper outlines both the underlying reasons for this phenomenon and the necessary shifts for geographic hazard research. It is argued that consideration of socio-cultural and spatial-temporal dimensions of natural hazards may shift the focus of disaster management from physical triggers to strategies of mitigation. Traditional risk management policy hardly considers natural hazards as a product of the interrelations between the physical environment, society and man-made environment. As a result, hazard protection is a socially-isolated activity and disaster response an event-focused reaction-both highly professionalised but seldom viewed as an integral part of a larger context. In order to shape mitigation actions as dynamic as the ever-changing processes that are responsible for natural disasters, geographic hazard research has to enhance its analytical focus, must incorporate new approaches and, finally, improve its policy relevance.

Item Type: Article
Research Programs: Risk, Modeling and Society (RMS)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:15
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2016 13:12
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/6806

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