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Coping with Natural Disasters and Urban Risk: An Approach to Urban Sustainability from Socio-Environmental Fragmentation and Urban Vulnerability Assessment

From Sustainable to Resilient Cities: Global Concerns and Urban Efforts

ISBN: 978-1-78441-058-2, eISBN: 978-1-78441-057-5

ISSN: 1047-0042

Publication date: 25 November 2014

Abstract

Purpose

Cities have been exposed to a variety of natural disasters such as flooding, extreme temperatures, storms, earthquakes, and other natural shocks, and have had to respond and adapt to such pressures over time. In the context of global climate change, natural disasters have increased across the globe. Apart from climate change, many urban environments in Latin America are experiencing significant transformations in land use patterns, socio-demographic change, changing labor markets, and economic growth, resulting from recent decades of globalization. Such transformations have resulted in the internal fragmentation of cities. In this context, the purpose of the present chapter is to demonstrate the importance in both theoretical and methodological terms, of integrating the concept of socio-environmental fragmentation into urban vulnerability research in order to make progress toward higher degrees of local sustainability in those areas of the city that suffer natural disasters and fragmentation.

Methodology/approach

A mixed methods approach is used in order to combine different technical issues from urban and climate change studies.

Findings

The findings are related to the importance of an integrated approach, regarding the complexity of urban life, and the relationship between the urban, the social, and the environmental phenomenon.

Social implications

This chapter relates to the revisit of the current state of preparedness and to determine whether further adaptations are required. The authors understood that these kinds of mixed approaches are necessary in order to understand the new complexity of urban processes.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Acknowledgments

The authors gratefully acknowledge the research support provided by the National Commission of Scientific and Technological Research (CONICYT), Project Fondecyt No. 11110354, Conicyt-DRI 12120003, and Conicyt – Fondap CEDEUS 15110020.

Citation

Link, F., Harris, J., Irarrázaval, F., Valenzuela, F., Welz, J. and Barth, K. (2014), "Coping with Natural Disasters and Urban Risk: An Approach to Urban Sustainability from Socio-Environmental Fragmentation and Urban Vulnerability Assessment", From Sustainable to Resilient Cities: Global Concerns and Urban Efforts (Research in Urban Sociology, Vol. 14), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 35-58. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1047-004220140000014002

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014 Emerald Group Publishing Limited