Short-Term Solutions to a Long-Term Challenge
Rethinking Disaster Recovery Planning to Reduce Vulnerabilities and Inequities
Published in: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Volume 17, Number 2 (January 2020). doi: 10.3390/ijerph17020482
Posted on RAND.org on April 30, 2020
In the immediate aftermath of disaster, governments usually act quickly to reduce risk and to recover their communities' socio-economic functioning. Policy makers in these situations need—but may not have the capacity or time for—substantial analysis and public debate about how to balance short- and long-term societal needs. Inadequate attention to this challenge may result in a deepening of the inequities that increase vulnerability to disaster impacts. We review case examples to illustrate how post-disaster policies may influence the nature, pace, and inclusiveness of community recovery. We then apply a vulnerability/inequity framework to conceptualize how to enhance disaster recovery and avoid perpetuating inequities when weighing the diverse needs of communities across long time horizons.