Social Protection and Disaster

Authored by: Walter Gillis Peacock , Carla Prater

The Routledge Handbook of Hazards and Disaster Risk Reduction

Print publication date:  December  2011
Online publication date:  March  2012

Print ISBN: 9780415590655
eBook ISBN: 9780203844236
Adobe ISBN: 9781136918698


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Disaster risk reduction (DRR) is fundamentally concerned with reducing the probabilities of sustaining harmful impacts associated with natural disasters (UNDP 2004: 36). Disaster risk is a function of the exposure to hazards and vulnerability. Recently a more comprehensive view of vulnerability has emerged that considers not only physical dimensions but also broader social, economic and environmental conditions (UNDP 2004: 42; Naudé et al. 2009a). Vulnerability can be generally understood as the lack of capacity to anticipate, cope, resist and recover from disasters (Wisner et al. 2004) and is shaped by an interaction among physical, social, economic and environmental factors. Of particular relevance for understanding the relationship between social protection (SP) and DRR are the socio-economic structures and processes that determine access to scarce resources such as income, wealth, social assets (see Chapter 58), power, cultural factors that shape belief and customs, and driving forces such as urbanisation and demographic change.

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