Methodological Issues

  • Robert A. Stallings
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)

Abstract

“It’s the same, only it’s different.” This sounds like one of former American baseball player Yogi Berra’s malapropisms. Nevertheless, it is appropriate when discussing methods of disaster research. Fifty years ago, Lewis Killian (2002 [1956]) stated it this way: “Basically, the methodological problems of field studies in disasters are those common to any effort to conduct scientifically valid field studies in the behavioral sciences. The disaster situation itself, however, creates special or aggravated problems . . . ” (p. 49). The basic tools of disaster researchers—a theory, a working hypothesis, an appropriate research design, a plan for selecting cases for study, a strategy for gathering data or recording observations, and a way to extract meaning from the materials collected—are easily recognizable as those used in all of the social sciences. Yet, issues specific to disaster research need to be addressed.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Peacock, WG. (2002). Cross–national and comparative disaster research. In R.A. Stallings (Ed.), Methods of disaster research (pp. 235–250). Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  2. Khondker, H.H. (2002). Problems and prospects of disaster research in the developing world: A case study of Bangladesh. In R.A. Stallings (Ed.), Methods of disaster research (pp. 334–348). Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  3. Quarantelli, E.L. (1981). The command post view point of view in local mass communication systems. International Journal of Communication Research, 7, 57–73.Google Scholar
  4. Farley, J.E. (1998). Down but not out: Earthquake awareness and preparedness trends in the St. Louis metropolitan area, 1990–1997. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 16, 303–319.Google Scholar
  5. Dynes, R.R. (1970). Organized behavior in disaster. Lexington, MA: Heath Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  6. Fritz, C.E., & Mathewson, J.H. (1957). Convergence behavior in disasters: A problem in social control. Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council.Google Scholar
  7. Emani, S., & Kasperson, J.X. (1996). Disaster communication via the information superhighway: Data and observations on the 1995 hurricane season. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 14, 321–342.Google Scholar
  8. Webb, G.R., Wachtendorf, T., & Eyre, A. (2000). Bringing culture back in: Exploring the cultural dimensions of disaster. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 18, 5–19.Google Scholar
  9. Weber, M. (1949). The methodology of the social sciences. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  10. Faris, R.E.L. (1970 [1967]). Chicago sociology 1920–1932. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  11. Erikson, K.T. (1966). Wayward puritans: A study in the sociology of deviance. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  12. Taylor, V.A. (1977). Good news about disasters. Psychology Today, 11, 93–96.Google Scholar
  13. Dearing, J.W., & Kazmierczak, J. (1993). Making iconoclasts credible: The Iben Browning earthquake prediction. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 11, 391–403.Google Scholar
  14. Nimmo, D. (1984). TV network news coverage of Three Mile Island: Reporting disasters as technological tables. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 2, 115–145.Google Scholar
  15. Quarantelli, E.L. (1998b). Epilogue: Where we have been and where we might go. In E.L. Quarantelli (Ed.), What is a disaster: Perspective on the question (pp. 234–273). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  16. Webb, G.R., Tierney, K.J., & Dahlhamer, J.M. (2000). Businesses and disasters: Empirical patterns and unanswered questions. Natural Hazards Review, 1, 83–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Quarantelli, E.L., & Dynes, R.R. (1970). Special issue: Organizational and groups behavior in disasters. American Behavioral Scientist, 13, 323–480.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Anderson, W.A. (1965). Some observations on a disaster subculture: The organizational response of Cincinnati, Ohio, to the 1964 flood. Columbus, OH: Research Note 6, The Ohio State University Disaster Research Center, Department of Sociology.Google Scholar
  19. Erikson, K.T. (1976). Everything in its path: Destruction of community in the Buffalo Creek flood. New York: Simon and Schuster.Google Scholar
  20. Drabek, T.E. (1970). Methodology of studying disasters. American Behavioral Scientist, 13, 331–343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Killian, L.M. (2002). An introduction to the methodological problems of field studies in disasters. In R. A. Stallings (Ed.), Methods of disaster research (pp. 49–93). Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  22. Wenger, D.E., & Friedman, B. (1986). Local and national media coverage of disaster: A content analysis of the print media’s treatment of disaster myths. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 4, 27–50.Google Scholar
  23. Carlin, G. (2001). Napalm and silly putty. New York: Hyperion.Google Scholar
  24. Scanlon, T.J. (2002b). Rewriting a living legend: Researching the 1917 Halifax explosion. In R.A. Stallings (Ed.), Methods of disaster research (pp. 266–301). Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  25. Scanlon, T.J., & Taylor, B. (1977). A stand-by research capacity. Mass Emergencies, 2, 35–41.Google Scholar
  26. Wenger, D.E., Dykes, J.D., Sebok, T.D., & Neff, J.L. (1975). It’s a matter of myths: An empirical examination of individual insight into disaster response. Mass Emergencies, 1, 33–46.Google Scholar
  27. Drabek, T.E., & Key, W.H. (1984). Conquering disaster: Family recovery and long-term consequences. New York: Irvington.Google Scholar
  28. Mileti, D. (1987). Sociological methods and disaster research. In R.R. Dynes, B. de Marchi, & C. Pelanda (Eds.), Sociology of disasters: Contributions of sociology to disaster research (pp. 57–69). Milan, Italy: Franco Angeli.Google Scholar
  29. Quarantelli, E.L. (1954). The nature and conditions of panic. American Journal of Sociology, 60, 267–275.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Quarantelli, E.L. (2002c). The role of the mass communication system in natural and technological disasters and possible extrapolation to terrorism situations. Risk Management: An International Journal, 4, 7–22.Google Scholar
  31. Etzioni, A. (1964). Modern organizations. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  32. Perry, R.W., & Quarantelli, E.L. (2005). What is a disaster? New answers to old questions. Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  33. Biderman, A.D. (1966). Anticipatory studies and stand-by research capabilities. In R. Bauer (Ed.), Social indicators (pp. 68–153). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Ollenburger, J.C., & Tobin, G.A. (1999). Women, aging, and post disaster stress: Risk factors for psychological morbidity. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 17, 65–78.Google Scholar
  35. Elias, N. (1987). Involvement and detachment. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  36. Becker, H.S. (1967). Whose side are we on? Social Problems, 14, 239–247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Dynes, R.R., & Quarantelli, E.L. (1968). What looting in civil disturbances really means. Trans-Action, 5, 9–4.Google Scholar
  38. Neal, D.M. (2000). Developing degree programs in disaster management. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 18(3), 417–437.Google Scholar
  39. Friesema, H.P., Caporaso J., Goldstein G., Lineberry, R., & McCleary, R. (1979). Aftermath: Communities after natural disasters. Beverly Hills, CA: SAGE.Google Scholar
  40. Quarantelli, E.L. (2005a). A social science research agenda for the disasters of the 21st century. In R.W. Perry & E.L. Quarantelli (Eds.), What is a disaster? New answers to old questions (pp. 325–396). Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  41. Wilkins, L. (1986). Media coverage of the Bhopal disaster: A cultural myth in the making. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 4, 7–33.Google Scholar
  42. Phillips, B. (2002). Qualitative methods and disaster research. In R. A. Stallings (Ed.), Methods of disaster research (pp. 194–211). Philadelphia: Xlibris.Google Scholar
  43. Dynes, R.R, Quarantelli, E.L., & Kreps, G.A. (1972). A perspective on disaster planning. Columbus, OH: Disaster Research Center, The Ohio State University.Google Scholar
  44. Van Willigen, M. (2001). Do disasters affect individuals’ psychological well-being? An over-time analysis of the effect of Hurricane Floyd on men and women in eastern North Carolina. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 19, 59–83.Google Scholar
  45. Sweet, S. (1998). The effect of a natural disaster on social cohesion: A longitudinal study. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 16, 321–331.Google Scholar
  46. Taylor, V.A. (1978). Future directions for study. In E. L. Quarantelli (Ed.), Disasters: Theory and methods (pp. 251–280). London and Beverly Hills, CA: SAGE.Google Scholar
  47. Babbie, E. (1995). The practice of social research. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.Google Scholar
  48. Wright, J.D., Rossi, P.H., Wright, S.R., & Weber-Burdin, E. (1979). After the clean-up: Long-range effects of natural disasters. Beverly Hills, CA: SAGE.Google Scholar
  49. Dynes, R.R., Haas, J.E., & Quarantelli, E.L. (1967). Administrative, methodological, and theoretical problems of disaster research. Indian Sociological Bulletin, 4, 215–227.Google Scholar
  50. Quarantelli, E.L., & Dynes, R.R. (1972). When disaster strikes: It isn’t much like what you’ve heard and read about. Psychology Today, 5(9), 66–70.Google Scholar
  51. Seydlitz, R.J., Spencer, W., Laska, S., & Triche, E. (1991). The effects of newspaper reports on the public’s response to a natural hazard event. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 9, 5–29.Google Scholar
  52. Hiroi, O., Mikami, S., & Miyata, K. (1985). A study of mass media reporting in emergencies. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, 3, 21–49.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert A. Stallings
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Policy, Planning, and DevelopmentUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

Personalised recommendations