Framing Community Disaster Resilience: Resources, Capacities, Learning, and Action

Submitted by Josh Ettinger | published 4th Feb 2019 | last updated 24th Jul 2020


Framing Community Disaster Resilience offers a guide to the theories, research and approaches for addressing the complexity of community resilience towards hazardous events or disasters. The book draws on the activities and achievements of the project emBRACE: Building Resilience Amongst Communities in Europe, a European Commission‐funded Research Project that ran from 2011 to 2015 and comprised consortium members from various academic disciplines from medical science and psychology via social and economic geography to risk research and emergency management.

The authors identify the key dimensions of resilience across a range of disciplines and domains and present an analysis of community characteristics, networks, behaviour and practices in specific test cases. The book explores five test cases whose communities are facing impacts triggered by different hazards, namely: river floods in Germany, earthquakes in Turkey, landslides in South Tyrol, Italy, heat-waves in London, and combined fluvial and pluvial floods in Northumberland and Cumbria.

The authors examine the data and indicators of past events in order to assess current situations and to tackle the dynamics of community resilience. In addition, they put the focus on empirical analysis to explore the resilience concept and to test the usage of indicators for describing community resilience.

Written for undergraduate students, postgraduates and researchers of social science, and policymakers, Framing Community Disaster Resilience reveals the most effective approaches to enhancing community resilience.

Several weADAPT articles summarize different chapters from the book (see below). The full published text, released in November 2018, is available to purchase from Wiley-Blackwell. The textbook and individual chapters can also be explored and downloaded on Wiley Online.

In this book

The book is divided into three main parts. The first part covers the conceptual and theoretical background required to fully understand the complexity of community resilience to hazardous events or disasters. The second part tackles the issue of data and indicators to report on past events, assess current situations and tackle the dynamics of community resilience. The third part focuses on empirical analysis to back the resilience concept and to test the usage of indicators for describing community resilience. Within this part, the contributions reflect the experience of the pilot case work. These three main scientific parts are followed by concluding remarks which reflect upon the emBRACE project journey and the rationale for our approach.

Table of contents

  • Introduction 
  • Section I Conceptual and Theoretical Underpinnings to Community Disaster Resilience
  • Section II Methods to ‘Measure’ Resilience – Data and Indicators 
    • ​The emBRACE Resilience Framework: Developing an Integrated Framework for Evaluating Community Resilience to Natural Hazards
    • Disaster Impact and Land Use Data Analysis in the Context of a Resilience‐Relevant Footprint
    • Development of Quantitative Resilience Indicators for Measuring Resilience at the Local Level
    • Managing Complex Systems: The Need to Structure Qualitative Data
    • Combining Quantitative and Qualitative Indicators for Assessing Community Resilience to Natural Hazards
  • Section III Empirically Grounding the Resilience Concept
    • Resilience, the Limits of Adaptation and the Need for Transformation in the Context of Multiple Flood Events in Central Europe
    • River and Surface Water Flooding in Northern England: The Civil Protection‐Social Protection Nexus
    • The Role of Risk Perception and Community Networks in Preparing for and Responding to Landslides: A Dolomite Case Study
    • The Social Life of Heatwave in London: Recasting the Role of Community and Resilience
    • Perceptions of Individual and Community Resilience to Earthquakes: A Case Study from Turkey
  • Conclusions

Further resources