Entrepreneurs as Signals of Healthy Community Rebound

  • Virgil Henry Storr
  • Stefanie Haeffele-Balch
  • Laura E. Grube
Part of the Perspectives from Social Economics book series (PSE)


As discussed in chapter 3, disaster victims will want to know if others plan to return when deciding whether to return and rebuild or to relocate somewhere else. If everyone is waiting for signs from others before deciding how to react, recovery might never occur (Chamlee-Wright 2010; Chamlee-Wright and Storr 2009a, 2010a). Entrepreneurs, however, can act as “focal points” or “points of orientation” for residents as they decide whether or not to return and rebuild after a disaster and formulate their post-disaster recovery plans.


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  1. 1.
    Chamlee-Wright (The Cultural and Political Economy of Recovery: Social Learning in a Post-Disaster Environment (London: Routledge, 2010): 49) has described this as “non-priced signal effects of commercial network activity.” As she explains, “to the extent that cooperation within commercial networks helps key service providers to return quickly, such activity helps to send a signal that the business community is committed to the rebuilding process, thereby aligning expectations of those still waiting to return.”Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    According to the 1990 Census, this community was 87 percent Catholic (Bankston and Zhou, “De Facto Congregationalism and Socioeconomic Mobility in Laotian and Vietnamese Immigrant Communities: A Study of Religious Institutions and Economic Change,” Review of Religious Research 41, no. 4 (2000): 453–470).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    The initial wave of emigrants received help from Catholic Charities. For more information on the history of this community, see Min Zhou and Carl Bankston (Growing Up American: How Vietnamese Children Adapt to Life in the United States (New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 1998)).Google Scholar
  4. 7.
    For a more in-depth discussion on how pastors are enabled and constrained by their spiritual positions in the community after disasters, see Chamlee-Wright (“Pastor Response in Post-Katrina New Orleans: Navigating the Cultural Economic Landscape.” In Culture and Economic Action, ed. L. E. Grube and V. H. Storr (Northampton: Edward Elgar 2015): 269–294).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 18.
    See Chamlee-Wright (“The Long Road Back: Signal Noise in the Post-Katrina Context,” The Independent Review 12, no. 2 (2007): 235–259) for a discussion of how “signal noise” add to the uncertainty that disaster victims face after a disaster. Also see chapter 8.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Virgil Henry Storr, Stefanie Haeffele-Balch and Laura E. Grube 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Virgil Henry Storr
  • Stefanie Haeffele-Balch
  • Laura E. Grube

There are no affiliations available

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