Lori Peek on Locating Katrina in Time and Space

Cumulative Disaster Exposure Among Displaced Children and Families

Members of the U.S. Coast Guard transport New Orleans residents affected by Hurricane Katrina (September 6, 2005)

Photo by Robert Reed/USCG

Event Details

Tuesday, April 4, 2023
2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time
11:00 - 12:00 a.m. Pacific Time

This event will be conducted virtually, and is open to the public.

Connection Details

To connect to the event on Tuesday, April 4, visit:


Passcode: 120732

To connect by telephone:
+1 646 828 7666 (New York)
+1 669 216 1590 (San Jose)

Webinar ID: 160 253 6687

Additional domestic and international numbers

About the Program

In their recent book, The Continuing Storm: Learning from Katrina, Kai Erikson and Lori Peek focus on the issues posed by locating disasters in time and in space. While there are good reasons for assigning clear temporal and geographic boundaries to disasters, they make the case that such sharp lines can obscure the enduring and often hidden effects of extreme events.

In this presentation, Lori Peek will share those arguments while also applying them to research on children and families who were affected by Katrina as well as several other major disasters. These children and their mothers were included in a qualitative subsample who were identified as both statistical and theoretical outliers in terms of their levels of disaster exposure through their participation in the population-based, longitudinal Women and Their Children’s Health (WaTCH) project. To date, only a limited number of studies have explored the effects of cumulative disaster exposure—defined here as multiple, acute onset, large-scale collective events that cause disruption for individuals, families, and entire communities. As research with the qualitative subsample revealed, these multiple exposures were shaped by pre-disaster structural inequalities and health and financial problems, high levels of material and social losses in subsequent disasters, and protracted post-disaster displacements. Ultimately, this presentation will focus on the conceptualization of disaster and the study of socially marginalized populations in an era that increasingly punctuated by environmental extremes.

This event is presented by the Disaster Management & Resilience Program (DMR) of the RAND Homeland Security Research Division (HSRD). The DMR webinar series was created to increase understanding of how disaster policies can affect the ability of communities to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters.


Teresa Thomas

Lori Peek

Director, Natural Hazards Center; Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado Boulder

Lori Peek is director of the Natural Hazards Center and professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Colorado Boulder. She is principal investigator of the National Science Foundation-funded CONVERGE facility and the Social Science Extreme Events Research (SSEER) network. She wrote the award-winning book Behind the Backlash: Muslim Americans after 9/11, co-edited Displaced: Life in the Katrina Diaspora and the Handbook of Environmental Sociology, and co-authored Children of Katrina and The Continuing Storm: Learning from Katrina. In 2021, she was nominated by President Joseph Biden and approved by the U.S. Senate to serve on the Board of Directors of the National Institute of Building Sciences.

Cortney Weinbaum

Jason Thomas Barnosky (moderator)

Associate Director, Disaster Management & Resilience Program, RAND Homeland Security Research Division; Senior Political Scientist

Moderator Jason Thomas Barnosky is an associate director of the RAND Disaster Management & Resilience Program, and a senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation. Prior to joining RAND, Barnosky served as a consultant to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and headed the Washington, D.C. office of the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA).

Barnosky worked in the legislative branch for approximately a decade, serving as a senior advisor to the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and a senior analyst at the Government Accountability Office (GAO). In the Senate, Barnosky led the committee's investigative efforts in a wide variety of areas--such as the law enforcement response in Ferguson, Missouri; the Boston Marathon bombing; Hurricane Sandy; the Gulf Coast oil spill; and FEMA's response to catastrophic disasters. Barnosky also drafted and negotiated legislation and advised the chairman on Presidential nominations. At GAO, Barnosky investigated programs addressing a range of issues--including military disability policy, financial regulatory policy, emergency management, information sharing, risk management, and critical infrastructure protection.

Barnosky was previously a senior fellow at the George Washington University Center for Cyber and Homeland Security (CCHS) and a nonresident scholar in the Governance Studies program at the Brookings Institution. Barnosky has published on homeland security policy and written for The American Prospect, The Hill, Polity, the Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, and the Brookings Institution. He received his Ph.D. in political science from Brown University and his bachelor's degree from New York University.


For questions about the event, contact Evania Baginski at baginski@rand.org