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Vulnerability and Resilience to Natural Hazards
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  • Cited by 8
  • Edited by Sven Fuchs, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna , Thomas Thaler, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
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Book description

In recent years there has been growing recognition that disaster risk cannot be reduced by focusing solely on physical hazards without considering factors that influence socio-economic impact. Vulnerability: the susceptibility to the damaging impacts of hazards, and resilience: the ability to recover, have become popular concepts in natural hazard and risk management. This book provides a comprehensive overview of the concepts of vulnerability and resilience and their application to natural hazards research. With contributions from both physical and social scientists it provides an interdisciplinary discussion of the different types of vulnerability and resilience, the links between them, and concludes with the remaining challenges and future directions of the field. Examining global case studies from the US coast to Austria, this is a valuable reference for researchers and graduate students working in natural hazard and risk reduction from both the natural and social sciences.

Reviews

'Both vulnerability and resilience are ‘slippery’ topics that, to be useful, need extensive theorising and careful analysis. This book takes a rigourous and comprehensive approach to their definition and elaboration, thereby making a very valuable contribution to the literature in this field.'

Edmund Penning-Rowsell - Middlesex University

'This is an essential volume in which leading scholars from three continents grapple with vulnerability to natural hazards in a thorough, no nonsense, fact-based manner. The Enlightenment tradition lives on despite both populist and post-modern scorn for science. Quantitative and qualitative assessment methods are clearly explained; whilst recent case examples, key messages and innovative diagrams will please a wide audience.'

Ben Wisner - University College London

'This impressive volume provides a comprehensive overview of arguably the two most important concepts orienting contemporary research and practice regarding environmental hazards: vulnerability and resilience. With individual contributions from leading international scholars that cover diverse applications across physical, social, economic and institutional domains, this volume offers a key resource to assist scholars, students, policymakers, and citizens in better comprehending human dimensions of hazards and disasters, and in developing interventions to reduce vulnerability and foster resilience. Additionally, the volume provides synthetic insights into linkages between the vulnerability and resilience frameworks. Given the centrality of these concepts to hazards and disaster research, and to related fields, this treatment is long overdue.'

Timothy Collins - University of Utah

'The editors have put together an excellent and thorough set of papers that any serious student of vulnerability and resilience should consider essential reading. The chapters are nuanced in approach, do an excellent job at reviewing existing literature, and highlight important conceptual questions as well as limitations in current understanding.'

David Etkin - York University, Canada

'Although being widely used in both risk research and management, the concepts of vulnerability and, particularly, resilience are the subject of ongoing debate with respect to their definition as well as their operationalisation. In this intense discourse, few publications have aimed at a systematic view. Against this backdrop, the present book offers a comprehensive and multifaceted approach, and provides an important and timely contribution to the discussion on the relation between the concepts of vulnerability and resilience. Particularly the aspects of scale and time dependence will provide food for thought on their future role in science and practice.'

Jakob Rhyner - United Nations University, Bonn

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