Natural disasters as a development opportunity: a spatial economic resilience interpretation

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Output type: Journal article

UM6P affiliated Publication?: Yes

Author list: Banica, Alexandru; Kourtit, Karima; Nijkamp, Peter

Publisher: Springer Verlag (Germany)

Publication year: 2020

Journal: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft (0173-7600)

Volume number: 40

Issue number: 2

ISSN: 0173-7600

eISSN: 1613-9836

Languages: English (EN-GB)

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Natural disasters are usually regarded as damage factors causing high private and social costs. Notwithstanding the incontestable validity of this premise, natural disasters do not necessarily lead to a structural deprivation of the area affected. Recent studies have clearly shown that in the long run one may even observe positive socio-economic effects ('blessings in disguise'). This paper investigates this challenging proposition by developing a risk-disaster-opportunityframework for a territorial system, and by analysing the socio-economic impacts of natural shocks from a resilience perspective. This is inter alia done by designing a typology of natural disasters, and by presenting a systematic classification of long-range impacts. An empirical test of the above proposition of positive recovery effects of natural disasters is carried out by using, in particular, long-term data from the worldwide EM-DAT database. The attention is then focussed on positive feedback loops in spatial systems that are affected by a natural perturbation. Various case studies (USA, China, Haiti, Chile, Japan) are undertaken in order to test the existence of long-term 'blessings in disguise' effects, using in particular the HDI-index. In various cases, such positive effects appear to exist, depending on the effectiveness of public management of natural disaster phenomena.


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Last updated on 2021-17-06 at 23:18