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Ali, F M M and Jones, K (2013) Negotiating community resilience in the city in a time of political change and deficit reduction. International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, 4(01), 9-22.

  • Type: Journal Article
  • Keywords: Climate change; Disaster prevention; Disasters; Extreme weather events; Inter-disciplinary working; Resilience; Stakeholders; United Kingdom
  • ISBN/ISSN: 1759-5908
  • URL: https://doi.org/10.1108/17595901311298973
  • Abstract:
    Purpose The aim of this paper is to develop a discussion of the production of community resilience to extreme weather during the first years of a new national government, one which is cognisant of the political change and uncertainty, the legislative framework and the institutional complexity that defines the adaptation scenario in the UK and London specifically. Design/methodology/approach Qualitative semi-structured interviews and group interventions were conducted amongst regional and local authority decision-makers in London in the period from late 2010 through to early 2011. Findings Hazard experience and political will were found to be important, interrelated drivers of community resilience. Adaptation work was found to face a tangibility problem that challenged stakeholders to make the case for its higher prioritisation in a highly economistic decision-making process. Citywide resilience-building schemes were observed of increasing organisational sophistication, and remained difficult to test and largely disengaged from the general public. Originality/value The paper offers tools to understand movement in the administrative architecture of adaptation, probing the associated inter-agency workings. It introduces the idea of the epistemic ecology to describe and explain the multiple kinds of knowledge employed by stakeholders in the adaptation scenario, and anticipates the impacts of localism and insurance policies currently in the pipeline.