Fostering civil society organizations for disaster relief in Japan: Challenges and prospects for sustainable future operations

Minako Sakai*, Keishin Inaba

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

This chapter will focus on Japanese experiences of disaster relief and recovery processes. Japan is highly prone to natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, and typhoons. Frequent disasters have resulted in the devastation of infrastructure and a large number of victims despite the fact that the country has taken well-thought-out prevention measures including mandatory earthquakeproof building standards, and public education and emergency drills to mitigate risks. One of the areas that requires much attention from public policymakers and scholars is post-disaster recovery. One of the emergent scholarly findings is that the effective involvement of social resources, particularly civil society organizations (CSOs) could enhance community resilience and speed up the recovery processes (Aldridge 2011, 2012; Chamlee-Wright 2010; Childs 2008; Kage 2011). Suma, one of the suburbs in Kobe, Japan, severely devastated after the large-scale earthquake in 1995, has recovered faster than other similarly devastated areas. Aldridge (2011, 2012) and Shaw (2003) attribute this speedy recovery to higher levels of social capital, including CSOs and existing civil society networks in the area. One of the key issues is thus to identify factors to support the development of civil society, which can work to assist disaster relief and post-disaster relief community recovery processes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDisaster Relief in the Asia Pacific
Subtitle of host publicationAgency and Resilience
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Pages52-66
Number of pages15
ISBN (Print)9781315884356
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes

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