Natural Hazards

, Volume 58, Issue 3, pp 905–928 | Cite as

Stakeholders’ perception in identification of river bank erosion hazard: a case study

  • Bela Das
Original Paper


Hazards due to riverbank erosion, despite being considered usually as a natural phenomenon, have become a critical problem in recent times as introduction of new technology and one-sided engineering-based solution approach to combat natural hazards without taking into account of opinions of all categories of stakeholders, particularly of the hazard victims and policy makers, has aggravated the problem in many cases. The riverbank erosion hazard aggravated as a direct consequence of construction of Farakka Barrage on its upstream and downstream on the river Ganga has seriously affected the lifestyles of the people in the districts of Malda and Murshidabad in the state of West Bengal in India. In this paper, an attempt has been made to study the perceptions of different groups of stakeholders, particularly hazard victims and authority responsible for monetary investment, about causes of riverbank erosion and possible preventive and remedial measures required to solve such a complex and multi-dimensional problem. A questionnaire-based household survey has been conducted on a number of important issues of the problem among the directly affected hazard victims at a highly erosion-prone area in the Malda district. Different perceptions and their impacts on selection and implementation of anti-erosion measures are critically studied. Analysis of data as obtained from the representative sample of erosion victims as well as the secondary sources of data clearly indicates that the hazard victims are to face bad effects because of existence of perception gap and that a holistic approach considering the perception of erosion victims needs to be undertaken for a permanent solution of the problem.


Stakeholder Perception Hazard Riverbank erosion River Ganga Flood Anti-erosion measures Embankment 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GeographyDr Meghnad Saha College, RanipurItahar, Uttar DinajpurIndia

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