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Over the past century, a number of mega catastrophes have revealed mitigation, risk reduction, and disaster recovery as processes which primarily revolve around social, not physical, infrastructure. Residents with deeper reservoirs of social capital display more resilience than individuals who have fewer social ties, so that areas in which horizontal associations are more active are more likely to regain population lost to disaster. Further, in the absence of a strong government, informal and formal institutions including neighborhood associations and organized criminal groups (such as the yakuza in Japan) may serve as providers of key resources when standard sources of information, assistance, food, and aid are closed. Decision makers and scholars alike must recognize that, given the unavoidable nature of risks and the increasing frequency and severity of disaster, social capital and social networks will be core engines for mitigation and recovery in the future.
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- The Emergence of Civil Society: Networks in Disasters, Mitigation, and Recovery
Daniel P. Aldrich
- Springer Netherlands
- Chapter 8