Enhancing disaster resilience and adaptability

Authors: Helen Boon, Joanne Millar, David Lake, Alison Cottrell and David King
Year: 2012

This factsheet describes the implementation and findings of a project that examined the community resilience of four disaster impacted communities: Beechworth (bushfire) and Bendigo (drought) in Victoria and Ingham (flood) and Innisfail (cyclone) in Queensland.The resilience of each community and its residents was enhanced or decreased by characteristics unique to that community. Nevertheless, each of the four communities retained a stable population despite the impact of disasters, suggesting individuals remaining in the community were resilient and the four communities were resilient overall. Resilience was found to be both an individual trait and a process. Being resilient was strongly linked to adaptability and having a sense of place. Important indirect influences on resilience are: financial capacity, family and neighbour support, communications, climate change knowledge and trust in communication sources. A number of key findings and recommendations resulting from this project are contained within the factsheet.

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