Coastal and floodplain areas are on the frontline of climate change in Bangladesh. Small-scale coastal and floodplain fishing communities of the country face a host of…
Coastal and floodplain areas are on the frontline of climate change in Bangladesh. Small-scale coastal and floodplain fishing communities of the country face a host of cross-scale stressors continually, some induced by climate change, and they have developed coping and adaption strategies based on customary social and experiential learnings. This paper aims to examine the coping and adaptation strategies that small-scale fishing communities undertake in the face of stresses including climate change and variability.
This research takes a nuanced ethnographic-oriented approach based on around two-year-long field study in two coastal and floodplain fishing villages, represented by two distinct ethnic groups. The study adopts direct observational methods to denote the ways small-scale fishing communities address the arrays of stressors to construct and reconstruct their survival and livelihood needs.
It was observed that fishers’ coping and adaptation strategies comprise a fluid combination of complex overlapping sets of actions that the households undertake based on their capitals and capabilities, perceptions, socio-cultural embeddedness and experiential learnings from earlier adverse situations. Broadly, these are survival, economic, physiological, social, institutional and religiosity-psychological in nature. Adaptation mechanisms involve some implicit principles or self-provisioning actions that households are compelled to do or choose under given sets of abnormal stresses to reach certain levels of livelihood functions.
Based on empirical field research, this paper recognizes small-scale fishers’ capability and adaptability in addressing climate change-induced stresses. Policymakers, international development planners, climate scientists and social workers can learn from these grassroots-level coping and adaptation strategies of fishing communities to minimize the adverse effects of climate change and variations.
Despite Bangladesh's great strides in formulating disaster management policies following the principles of good governance, the degree to which these policies have…
Despite Bangladesh's great strides in formulating disaster management policies following the principles of good governance, the degree to which these policies have successfully been implemented at the local level remains largely unknown. The objectives of this study were two-fold: (1) to examine the roles and effectiveness of local-level governance and disaster management institutions, and (2) to identify barriers to the implementation of national policies and Disaster-Risk-Reduction (DRR) guidelines at the local community level.
Between January 2014 and June 2015 we carried out an empirical investigation in two coastal communities in Bangladesh. We employed a qualitative research and Case Study approach, using techniques from the Participatory Rural Appraisal toolbox to collect data from local community members as well as government and NGO officials.
Our study revealed that interactive disaster governance, decentralization of disaster management, and compliance by local-level institutions with good governance principles and national policy guidelines can be extremely effective in reducing disaster-loss and damages. According to coastal community members, the local governments have generally failed to uphold good governance principles, and triangulated data confirm that the region at large suffers from rampant corruption, political favoritism, lack of transparency and accountability and minimal inclusion of local inhabitants in decision-making – all of which have severely impeded the successful implementation of national disaster-management policies.
While considerable research on good governance has been pursued, our understanding of good disaster governance and their criteria is still poor. In addition, although numerous national disaster management policy and good governance initiatives have been taken in Bangladesh, like many other developing countries, the nature and extent of their local level implementation are not well known. This study contributes to these research gaps, with identification of further research agenda in these areas.
The study focuses on good disaster governance and management issues and practices, their strengths and limitations in the context of cyclone and storm surges along coastal Bangladesh. It offers specific good disaster governance criteria for improving multi-level successful implementation. The paper deals with International Sendai Framework that called for enhancement of local level community resilience to disasters. Thus, it contributes to numerous policy and practice areas relating to good disaster governance.
Good disaster governance would benefit not only from future disaster losses but also from improved prevention and mitigation of natural hazards impact, benefiting society at large. Improvement in knowledge and practice in disaster-risk-reduction through good governance and effective management would ensure local community development and human wellbeing at the national level.
The failure of local-level government institutions to effectively implement national disaster management and resilience-building policies is largely attributable to a lack of financial and human resources, rampant corruption, a lack of accountability and transparency and the exclusion of local inhabitants from decision-making processes. Our study identified the specific manifestations of these failures in coastal communities in Bangladesh. These results underscore the vital need to address the wide gap between national DRR goals and the on-the-ground realities of policy implementation to successfully enhance the country's resilience to climate change-induced disasters.
The purpose of this chapter is to offer reflections on conventional theories concerning causes and determinants of diseases. It also intends to examine both theoretical…
The purpose of this chapter is to offer reflections on conventional theories concerning causes and determinants of diseases. It also intends to examine both theoretical and empirical bases for adopting an Integrated Social-Ecological Systems (ISES) lens as a tool for understanding complexities related to drivers, determinants and causes of diseases.
We assessed the theoretical underpinnings of a range of historical and contemporary lenses for viewing infectious disease drivers and the implications of their use when used to explain both personal (i.e. individual) and population health. We examined these issues within the empirical context of the City of Dhaka (Bangladesh) by adopting an ISES lens. Within this study an emphasis has been placed on illustrating how feedback loops and non-linearity functions in systems have a direct bearing upon various aspects of infectious disease occurrences.
A brief triumph over microbes during the last century stemmed in part from our improved understanding of disease causation which was built using disciplinary-specific, monocausal approaches to the study of disease emergence. Subsequently, empirical inquiries into the multi-factorial aetiology and the ‘web of causation’ of disease emergence have extended frameworks beyond simplistic, individualistic descriptions of disease causation. Nonetheless, much work is yet to be done to understand the roles of complex, intertwined, multi-level, social-ecological factors in affecting disease occurrence. We argue, a transdisciplinary-oriented, ISES lens is needed to explain the complexities of disease occurrence at various and interacting levels. More theoretical and empirical formulations, with evidence derived from various parts of the world, is also required to further the debate.
Our study advances the theoretical as well as empirical basis for considering an integrated human-nature systems approach to explaining disease occurrence at all levels so that factors at the individual, household/neighbourhood, local, regional and global levels are not treated in isolation.