A cross-cultural examination of risk perception and building community resilience

Research output: Other contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


This presentation aims to examine the relationship between risk perception and community dependence upon external forces, such as the emergency services. Incorporating disaster economics, community psychology and emergency management, we present a cross cultural interdisciplinary case study of risk perception and resilience from the disaster-prone developing country of Bangladesh and a flood-prone rural community in Australia.On the premise that the extent to which a community develops resilience is contingent upon its exposure to disaster, and that greater access to physical resources may foster a less resilient community more reliant on the emergency services to 'save' them, we undertook a field trip to a number of flood-prone villages in Bangladesh and one in NSW. The purpose was to inform models of resilience in both Bangladesh and Australia.Due to their frequent occurrence, we found the normalizing of the concept of 'disaster' in various flood-prone villages in Bangladesh. In the West there is a tendency to avoid loss; in Bangladesh there is a shared community understanding of the meaning of loss, and its acceptance as a part of life. In this presentation we examine socio-cultural perspectives on risk and loss, and the western tendency to commodify risk, making risk protection a product to be purchased, and discuss whether this is counterproductive to the building of resilient communities in Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventAustralian & New Zealand Disaster and Emergency Management Conference - Brisbane Exhibition & Convention Centre, Brisbane, Australia
Duration: 16 Apr 201218 Apr 2012


ConferenceAustralian & New Zealand Disaster and Emergency Management Conference
Abbreviated titleEarth: Fire and Rain
Internet address


Dive into the research topics of 'A cross-cultural examination of risk perception and building community resilience'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this