Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=1996-142120200001&lang=en vol. 12 num. 1 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Flood survivors' perspectives on vulnerability reduction to floods in Mbire district, Zimbabwe</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Disasters result from the interactions of hazards and vulnerability conditions. Considering the perspectives of survivors of a disaster event is critical for reducing the progression of vulnerability conditions. The Mbire community in Zimbabwe is facing increasing threats from recurring high- and low-magnitude floods that manifest themselves in the disruption of livelihoods and destruction of crops and infrastructure. This study, therefore, explored the perspectives of flood survivors on vulnerability to floods and examined their vulnerability-reduction measures. Using an interpretivist approach to knowledge generation, a sample of 51 research participants provided data through interviews, a focus group discussion and field observations. Results showed that shortage of land, flood-based farming practices, poverty and climate change, amongst others, are the key drivers of the smallholder farmers' vulnerability to floods. The most affected groups of people include women, children and the elderly. To reduce their vulnerability, the smallholder farmers mainly rely on traditional flood-proofed structures built on stilts, dual home system and indigenous flood forecasting. The study proposes six policy implications to reduce vulnerability to floods. These include diversifying rural livelihoods beyond the farming sector, investment in irrigation infrastructure, increasing access to financial resources, constructing human settlements away from floodplains, enforcing environmental laws regarding flood-based farming and community education on the long-term negative impacts of recession farming. The implementation of these policy recommendations can contribute to community resilience to flood disasters. <![CDATA[<b>Antibiotic resistance and R&D failure: The need for near real-time disaster research</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Increasing antibiotic resistance across the world seems to reflect a failure of research and development (R) to keep pace with societally important disaster risks. This article uses the example of steadily increasing antibiotic resistance to question whether current R systems are able to timeously deal with certain societally important research problems. A review and discussion of new theoretical developments is offered, to suggest how novel technologies might be applied to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of health-related disaster risk research. This article seeks to make a conceptual contribution through a critical review and synthesis of novel theory. Theoretical propositions are derived from conceptual analysis. Four key challenges are related to the derived propositions, to derive guidelines for how the disaster risk management process can be supplemented to improve its near real-time research capability. The theoretical propositions derived here relate to certain overarching challenges facing disaster risk research. The theoretical arguments made in this article seek to offer a heuristic perspective that may be useful to those seeking to apply novel technologies in disaster risk research to address societally important research problems such as antibiotic resistance. This research identifies evidence of the failure of the contemporary research system to solve problems like antibiotic resistance. On the basis of a synthesis of novel literature and theory, conclusions suggest certain useful avenues for the improvement of the research process. Urgency is recommended because of mounting societal costs of slow research responses to societal problems. <![CDATA[<b>Resilience of informal settlements to climate change in the mountainous areas of Konso, Ethiopia and QwaQwa, South Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Managing change is essential for human survival; thus, the importance of adapting to climate change has been increasingly recognised by researchers and governments alike. This is reflected in the growing literature on climate change and the imperative for action including building resilience in our socio-ecological systems. Despite the large body of research that now exists, few studies have considered the resilience of informal rural or peri-urban settlements in mountainous regions. This article considered the resilience of two rural settlements in mountainous areas, namely Konso, Ethiopia, and QwaQwa, South Africa, to the influences of climate change based on the assets available to them. The authors obtained the local communities' perception of their risks throsugh interviews with community leaders and a survey of 384 residents, divided equally between each settlement. Furthermore, the resilience of each community was assessed on the basis of their environmental, social, economic, human, institutional and physical capitals using a climate change resilience indicator. The findings showed that both communities faced major challenges because of climate change, particularly from drought and poverty. We found that both communities retained some forms of indigenous knowledge, but its greater application in Konso appeared to improve resilience to a greater extent than QwaQwa, where it played a lesser role and the community was more dependent on the government. However, indigenous knowledge alone is not sufficient to support these communities in the long term, given the growing aridity of the regions, and other approaches are also necessary, including government support, to enhance and grow their capitals. <![CDATA[<b>Building community resilience to climate change: The role of a Population-Health-Environment programme in supporting the community response to cyclone Haruna in Madagascar</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Managing change is essential for human survival; thus, the importance of adapting to climate change has been increasingly recognised by researchers and governments alike. This is reflected in the growing literature on climate change and the imperative for action including building resilience in our socio-ecological systems. Despite the large body of research that now exists, few studies have considered the resilience of informal rural or peri-urban settlements in mountainous regions. This article considered the resilience of two rural settlements in mountainous areas, namely Konso, Ethiopia, and QwaQwa, South Africa, to the influences of climate change based on the assets available to them. The authors obtained the local communities' perception of their risks throsugh interviews with community leaders and a survey of 384 residents, divided equally between each settlement. Furthermore, the resilience of each community was assessed on the basis of their environmental, social, economic, human, institutional and physical capitals using a climate change resilience indicator. The findings showed that both communities faced major challenges because of climate change, particularly from drought and poverty. We found that both communities retained some forms of indigenous knowledge, but its greater application in Konso appeared to improve resilience to a greater extent than QwaQwa, where it played a lesser role and the community was more dependent on the government. However, indigenous knowledge alone is not sufficient to support these communities in the long term, given the growing aridity of the regions, and other approaches are also necessary, including government support, to enhance and grow their capitals. <![CDATA[<b>Risk of a disaster: Risk knowledge, interpretation and resilience</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Knowledge and interpretation of local risks are essential in disaster mitigation. Auckland's exposure to multiple hazards is a source of national concern. Considering the multiplicity of natural hazards in Auckland, investigations on how communities can enhance their resilience to possible disasters have become imperative. Convincing individuals to embark on activities that would reduce their vulnerability to natural hazards is difficult, especially in communities that have not recently experienced the impact of natural hazards. This research investigated risk knowledge and interpretation in the South African community in Auckland. Data for this study were collected from both primary and secondary sources. A questionnaire was distributed amongst the South African population, and follow-up interviews with participants constituted the primary sources of data collection. Other sources were materials in the public domain. Regarding data analysis, an independent-sample t-test and Spearman's correlation analysis were used to analyse the quantitative research data. A general inductive approach for qualitative data was used to analyse the research interviews. The research confirmed the subjectivity in risk perception and also revealed a high-risk perception, especially for earthquake, flood and tsunami. Whilst this study agreed that there is a relationship between risk perception and preparedness, such relationship is often contextual. The research concludes that risk perception could contribute to disaster resilience if communities appreciate the impact of a natural hazard irrespective of disaster experience or otherwise. <![CDATA[<b>Local worlds: Vulnerability and food insecurity in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The overwhelming finding is that after more than a decade of democracy, the Eastern Cape (EC) province remains trapped in structural poverty. This shows in all aspects of its demographic, health and socio-economic profiles. Methods, measurements and statistics vary, but from the various studies and data sets one can attest that the majority of the population still lives in poverty. Despite the democratic transformation that began in South Africa in 1994, poverty, unemployment and inequality exist today along with the food insecurity that is symptomatic of them. Food insecurity in South Africa varies across its nine provinces, with the EC province frequently measured as the poorest province in the country. This article examines the extent to which the EC can be defined as vulnerable to food insecurity by using a review of current literature. These vulnerabilities are compounded by the environmental vulnerability factors of climate change and drought, which affect households' ability to grow food. The elderly and children are affected by life cycle vulnerability factors, with children prone to malnutrition and the elderly unable to work to produce food. Race and gender are associated with vulnerability to food insecurity. Most of the people in the EC who are poor and are African, and a high percentage of women-headed households is poor. The vulnerability factors identified suggest that job creation and agricultural productivity may be useful ways of targeting food insecurity. Interventions need to take local contexts into account and focus on particular communities and their unique needs. <![CDATA[<b>Collaborating network in managing post the Mount Merapi's disruption, Indonesia</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Collaborative governance and social capital can help to form a resilient community in the wake of a disaster, such as the eruptions of Mount Merapi in Indonesia. This study examines the successfulness of the handling of disasters in Indonesia, with particular focus on eruptions of Mount Merapi. Disasters foster a close relationship between the government and the community in response to the emergency. This study uses a mixed method to analyse social networks in evaluating the structure of disaster networks in Indonesia and their implications for disaster management. Data were collected via a survey of 100 respondents from 28 institutions representing, for practical purposes, each population identified by each institution (government, non-governmental organisations and volunteers) that participated in handling the Merapi eruption disaster. The findings revealed that considerable miscommunication between institutions reduced the effectiveness of disaster management so that close discussion about conflict resolution was needed to develop more mature and systematic planning. Inter-agency trust is also felt to be necessary in disaster management. Trust between agency members and other institutions strongly supports the success of systematic disaster management. Meanwhile, every institution must foster open leadership by giving individuals with precise knowledge of the situation and the condition of the disaster area a mandate to lead directly in the field. Disaster governance is carried out through the agreement of each institution formed in the Disaster Emergency Planning (Rencana Penanggulangan Kedaruratan Bencana - RPKB) guidelines. These guidelines expect the Government and the community to coordinate with each other in a structured and systematic manner in the process of disaster management. <![CDATA[<b>Impact of climate change and variability on traditional farming systems: Farmers' perceptions from south-west, semi-arid Zimbabwe</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Despite annual climate variability threats, traditional farming in semi-arid Zimbabwe remains entrenched in unproductive, rain-fed agricultural practices. Adaptation strategies by farmers are seemingly failing to mitigate climate impacts, as evidenced by annual crop and livestock losses. Matabeleland South Province was a thriving livestock and small grain-producing province in the 1970s. Today, the province relies heavily on humanitarian assistance from government and humanitarian agencies. Through literature review, observations and focus group discussions with 129 farmers, the qualitative study established the perceptions of farmers around climate variability impacts in the past 20 years in Mangwe, Matobo and Gwanda districts in Zimbabwe. The study (1) analysed changes in climate and weather patterns in the past 20 years; (2) analysed climate impacts on traditional farming systems in the past 20 years in Gwanda, Mangwe and Matobo districts in Zimbabwe; and (3) established farmers' perceptions, experiences and their climate adaptive strategies. The findings showed that the farmers experienced annual heat waves, protracted droughts, chaotic rain seasons, frost and floods, which led to environmental degradation. Traditional farming systems or practices have been abandoned in favour of buying and selling and gold panning, among other alternative livelihood options, because of climate-related threats and misconceptions around the subject of climate change. Farmers fail to access timely and comprehensive weather forecasts, resulting in annual crop and livestock losses, as decision-making is compromised. Given that the smallholder farming system sustains the bulk of the population in Matabeleland South Province in Zimbabwe, climate education and capital investment is needed to change traditional farmer perceptions about climate change impacts on the farming practices. Increased climate awareness initiatives, establishment of village-based weather stations and the marrying of traditional farming climate knowledge to modern practices are highly recommended to enhance resilience to climate. <![CDATA[<b>Perception of seismic design by architects in Algeria</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The purpose of this article is to analyse the results of a survey towards the architects and engineers of construction in order to estimate the perception of the anti-seismic protection amongst these professionals. It focuses more on the architects who design buildings and, in many cases, monitor their implementation. The main result is the observation of inadequacies and gaps in seismic culture amongst the professionals, especially architects. These difficulties require the reinforcement of earthquake-resistant training. This effort to upgrade skills is as important as other aspects of the preventive management of the seismic risk in Algeria. <![CDATA[<b>The role of knowledge and fatalism in college students related to the earthquake-risk perception</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100010&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en At present, the earthquake-risk perception research in Aceh only focuses on the general public. Limited research examines earthquake-risk perceptions amongst students. This exploratory study is focused on geography education students because this study programme has integrated disaster education into its curriculum. This study aims to find the extent to which earthquake knowledge and fatalism beliefs affect earthquake-risk perception. The survey was conducted on 210 students using questionnaires. Using the Spearman correlation test, the results of this study revealed that there was a positive and significant relationship between earthquake knowledge and risk perception with coefficients (0.200) and significance (0.004). Meanwhile, fatalism beliefs have a negative and significant relationship to the perception of earthquake risk with correlation coefficient (−0.224) and significance (0.001). This means that the higher the fatalism attitude of students towards disasters, the lower the perception of earthquake risk. It is feared that fatalism will have an impact on the lack of disaster preparedness. Fatalism beliefs are complex issues that require joint efforts from governments, religious leaders, educational institutions and the media to reduce them. <![CDATA[<b>Economic vulnerability to tropical storms on the southeastern coast of Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100011&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Climate change will hit Africa economically hard, not least Southeast Africa. Understanding the impact of extreme climatic events is important for both economic development and climate change policy. Global climatological summaries reveal high damage potential pathways for developed countries. Will countries in Africa, especially in the southeastern board of the continent, be vulnerable to loss-generating extreme climate events? This study examined for countries in the sub-region, their vulnerability and damage costs, the impact of climate change on tropical storm damage, as well as the differential impacts of storm damages. An approach using a combination of physical and economic reasoning, as well as results of previous studies, reveals that in Southeast Africa, the economic response to the key damage parameters of intensity, size and wind speed is significant for all the countries. Damages in Kenya and Tanzania are sensitive to wind speed. Both vulnerability and adaptation are important for Madagascar and Mozambique - two countries predicted to be persistently damaged by tropical storms. For Mauritius and South Africa, inflictions from extreme events are expected to be impactful, and would require resilient public and private infrastructure. Reducing the physical and socio-economic vulnerability to extreme events will require addressing the underlying socio-economic drivers, as well as developing critical public infrastructure. <![CDATA[<b>Risking health for rental housing</b><b>: </b><b>Reviewing service access in the informal backyard rental sector</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100012&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Informal backyard rentals (IBRs) constitute South Africa's fastest growing housing subsector, flourishing within a relative research vacuum and without national policy intervention to address the vulnerabilities of stakeholders to the health risks potentially presented. This article reviewed the literature on IBRs, focussing on past policies and interventions, general characteristics, infrastructure and service access to inform an analysis of potential health risks from the existing literature to guide future research and policy-making. Research followed a qualitative approach to review IBR literature dating after 2004. Relevant publications were identified from bibliographic databases using Boolean search logic and by reviewing citations in and later citations of these publications. Relevant secondary sources were also included. The review evidenced that IBRs have received increasing policy, but limited research attention, and that health hazards have been particularly neglected. Although issues such as shared water and sanitation, inappropriate waste disposal, poor hygiene practices, high densities and poor quality structures have been referenced extensively - alluding to risks and health concerns - few studies have focussed directly on health, risk and vulnerability. The risk analysis completed based on the literature made potential risks explicit, exemplified by references to specific conditions, such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and the coronavirus pandemic, demonstrating pathogenic pathways, contamination and transmission risks conducive to poor health, infection and potential disaster. The review captured and updated the contemporary literature on IBRs, with the subsequent analysis providing a platform for future empirical research on health, infrastructure and IBRs to address potential risks towards positive change in future policies. <![CDATA[<b>Building community resilience to climate change: The role of a Population-Health-Environment programme in supporting the community response to cyclone Haruna in Madagascar</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100013&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Informal backyard rentals (IBRs) constitute South Africa's fastest growing housing subsector, flourishing within a relative research vacuum and without national policy intervention to address the vulnerabilities of stakeholders to the health risks potentially presented. This article reviewed the literature on IBRs, focussing on past policies and interventions, general characteristics, infrastructure and service access to inform an analysis of potential health risks from the existing literature to guide future research and policy-making. Research followed a qualitative approach to review IBR literature dating after 2004. Relevant publications were identified from bibliographic databases using Boolean search logic and by reviewing citations in and later citations of these publications. Relevant secondary sources were also included. The review evidenced that IBRs have received increasing policy, but limited research attention, and that health hazards have been particularly neglected. Although issues such as shared water and sanitation, inappropriate waste disposal, poor hygiene practices, high densities and poor quality structures have been referenced extensively - alluding to risks and health concerns - few studies have focussed directly on health, risk and vulnerability. The risk analysis completed based on the literature made potential risks explicit, exemplified by references to specific conditions, such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and the coronavirus pandemic, demonstrating pathogenic pathways, contamination and transmission risks conducive to poor health, infection and potential disaster. The review captured and updated the contemporary literature on IBRs, with the subsequent analysis providing a platform for future empirical research on health, infrastructure and IBRs to address potential risks towards positive change in future policies. <![CDATA[<b>26/11 Mumbai terrorist attack revisited: Lessons learnt and novel disaster model for future</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100014&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Informal backyard rentals (IBRs) constitute South Africa's fastest growing housing subsector, flourishing within a relative research vacuum and without national policy intervention to address the vulnerabilities of stakeholders to the health risks potentially presented. This article reviewed the literature on IBRs, focussing on past policies and interventions, general characteristics, infrastructure and service access to inform an analysis of potential health risks from the existing literature to guide future research and policy-making. Research followed a qualitative approach to review IBR literature dating after 2004. Relevant publications were identified from bibliographic databases using Boolean search logic and by reviewing citations in and later citations of these publications. Relevant secondary sources were also included. The review evidenced that IBRs have received increasing policy, but limited research attention, and that health hazards have been particularly neglected. Although issues such as shared water and sanitation, inappropriate waste disposal, poor hygiene practices, high densities and poor quality structures have been referenced extensively - alluding to risks and health concerns - few studies have focussed directly on health, risk and vulnerability. The risk analysis completed based on the literature made potential risks explicit, exemplified by references to specific conditions, such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and the coronavirus pandemic, demonstrating pathogenic pathways, contamination and transmission risks conducive to poor health, infection and potential disaster. The review captured and updated the contemporary literature on IBRs, with the subsequent analysis providing a platform for future empirical research on health, infrastructure and IBRs to address potential risks towards positive change in future policies. <![CDATA[<b>Book review of 'Disaster by choice: How our actions turn natural hazards into catastrophes</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1996-14212020000100015&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en Informal backyard rentals (IBRs) constitute South Africa's fastest growing housing subsector, flourishing within a relative research vacuum and without national policy intervention to address the vulnerabilities of stakeholders to the health risks potentially presented. This article reviewed the literature on IBRs, focussing on past policies and interventions, general characteristics, infrastructure and service access to inform an analysis of potential health risks from the existing literature to guide future research and policy-making. Research followed a qualitative approach to review IBR literature dating after 2004. Relevant publications were identified from bibliographic databases using Boolean search logic and by reviewing citations in and later citations of these publications. Relevant secondary sources were also included. The review evidenced that IBRs have received increasing policy, but limited research attention, and that health hazards have been particularly neglected. Although issues such as shared water and sanitation, inappropriate waste disposal, poor hygiene practices, high densities and poor quality structures have been referenced extensively - alluding to risks and health concerns - few studies have focussed directly on health, risk and vulnerability. The risk analysis completed based on the literature made potential risks explicit, exemplified by references to specific conditions, such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and the coronavirus pandemic, demonstrating pathogenic pathways, contamination and transmission risks conducive to poor health, infection and potential disaster. The review captured and updated the contemporary literature on IBRs, with the subsequent analysis providing a platform for future empirical research on health, infrastructure and IBRs to address potential risks towards positive change in future policies.