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Living with increasing floods: insights from a rural Philippine community

Living with increasing floods: insights from a rural Philippine community Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to consider people's ways of coping with increasing flooding in a Philippine rural community. Design/methodology/approach – The paper relies on extensive field work conducted between July and August 2006. It cross‐checks data from different sources including interviews with key informants, a questionnaire‐based survey, informal group discussions, passive and stationary observations and photographic documentation. Field work was completed by the collection of secondary written documents. Findings – The paper emphasizes that the capacity of flood‐affected people to cope with increasing hazards is rooted in their ability to adjust their everyday lifestyles. Flood‐affected people seldom rely on extraordinary measures to face nature's extremes. People's ability to adjust their daily life is deeply dependent on the strength of their livelihoods and social network. The kind and variety of livelihoods turned out to be a critical factor in securing the financial means to purchase enough food to satisfy daily needs. Social networking was also found to be critical in providing alternative support in times of crisis. Practical implications – This paper fosters the use of community‐based disaster risk reduction programmes coupled with development objectives to enhance people's capacity to cope with natural hazards. It further underlines the need to empower people to make them less vulnerable in the face of natural hazards through fair access to resources. Originality/value – This article contributes to the understanding of how people cope with natural hazards in the Philippines and provides an array of possible remedial strategies for community‐based disaster risk reduction. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Disaster Prevention and Management Emerald Publishing

Living with increasing floods: insights from a rural Philippine community

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0965-3562
DOI
10.1108/09653560810887301
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to consider people's ways of coping with increasing flooding in a Philippine rural community. Design/methodology/approach – The paper relies on extensive field work conducted between July and August 2006. It cross‐checks data from different sources including interviews with key informants, a questionnaire‐based survey, informal group discussions, passive and stationary observations and photographic documentation. Field work was completed by the collection of secondary written documents. Findings – The paper emphasizes that the capacity of flood‐affected people to cope with increasing hazards is rooted in their ability to adjust their everyday lifestyles. Flood‐affected people seldom rely on extraordinary measures to face nature's extremes. People's ability to adjust their daily life is deeply dependent on the strength of their livelihoods and social network. The kind and variety of livelihoods turned out to be a critical factor in securing the financial means to purchase enough food to satisfy daily needs. Social networking was also found to be critical in providing alternative support in times of crisis. Practical implications – This paper fosters the use of community‐based disaster risk reduction programmes coupled with development objectives to enhance people's capacity to cope with natural hazards. It further underlines the need to empower people to make them less vulnerable in the face of natural hazards through fair access to resources. Originality/value – This article contributes to the understanding of how people cope with natural hazards in the Philippines and provides an array of possible remedial strategies for community‐based disaster risk reduction.

Journal

Disaster Prevention and ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 20, 2008

Keywords: Flooding; Coping strategies; Livelihoods; Food security; Social network; Philippines

References