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  • 1. Berg, M.
    et al.
    De Majo, Veronica
    Dalarna University, School of Education, Health and Social Studies, Political Science.
    Understanding the Global Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction2017In: Risk, Hazards & Crisis in Public Policy, ISSN 1944-4079, E-ISSN 1944-4079, Vol. 8, no 2, p. 147-167Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Disasters are a growing international concern that has spurred the development of political strategies and policies from international to local levels. This paper analyzes how disasters are constructed as a policy problem within the UN global strategy for disaster risk reduction. Building on a social constructivist view of policy problems, we analyze how disasters and disaster risks are being represented through these global policies, while we also pay attention to what this representation excludes and de-emphasizes. We show that the UN strategy is mostly concerned with adjusting or adapting societies to hazards, and managing risks, rather than addressing the social processes that render people vulnerable to those hazards. The predominant concern with technological and managerial solutions eclipses the need for changes in the social structures that create disaster risks. We argue that the understanding of disasters represented in the UN strategy supports an emerging holistic paradigm. However, we also argue that the holism it represents is limited rather than radical. By making visible what is excluded or not properly problematized in this representation, we point to the complexity of the task and show where its limitations lie.

  • 2.
    De Majo, Veronica
    et al.
    Dalarna University, School of Education, Health and Social Studies, Political Science. Örebro universitet.
    Olsson, J.
    Institutional foundations of disaster risk reduction policy. Exploring and elaborating on two different cases: Argentina and Sweden2019In: Disaster Prevention and Management, ISSN 0965-3562, E-ISSN 1758-6100, Vol. 28, no 2, p. 245-257Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore and elaborate on how institutional conditions work to the advantage and disadvantage of disaster risk reduction (DRR) policies on different levels in two countries. Design/methodology/approach: A qualitative case study design is used to study empirically two countries with very different traditions when it comes to political-administrative institutions: Argentina and Sweden. Findings: As expected, the institutional foundations of DRR policy in Sweden are shown to be more consistent and stable than in Argentina. However, this difference is of less importance when considering the crucial role of local practices. National institutional foundations can function as support – but is not a necessary condition – for building disaster preparedness on the ground. The authors argue that national governments cannot do without institutionalized praxis-based preparedness, which is vital for both effective emergency management and learning. Originality/value: This paper contributes to the disaster research debate by elaborating on institutional arrangements that can facilitate or hinder DRR strategies in a multi-level context. The main argument is that institutional practices on the ground are important to compensate for insufficient national institutions, either because they are weak or too distant from practical DRR. The authors also elaborate on how institutional practices can function as a source for learning and for building legitimate practical authority from the bottom up. © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited.

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