Resilience and Thriving in Spite of Disasters: A Stages of Change Approach
This chapter discusses individual, social, and organizational readiness for change in the context of resilience and sustainability; research focuses on measuring and improving population preparedness for catastrophic events, especially events exacerbated by extreme weather and sea-level rise. Resilience needs to be addressed directly through physical and financial measures, redistribution of control mechanisms, stress and conflict management pre- and post-disaster. Also, populations will benefit from adapting their attitudes and everyday habits that will be affected by projected disruptions in resource availability, infrastructure, and environmental conditions. This chapter demonstrates the potential of the Transtheoretical Model (TTM) to improve preparedness to respond to extreme weather and sea-level rise. One key strength of this model is its ability to reach even those who are not yet ready to take action and perhaps even unaware. TTM interventions have proven effective in changing numerous health behaviors—not only for individuals, but also at the organizational and policy level. TTM shows promise to promote sustainability and resilience behavior changes on a large scale. Current work has produced promising results at the local level, and a federally funded collaborative of multiple agencies is currently preparing to evaluate this model nationally.
KeywordsBehavior change TTM Extreme weather Sea-level rise Disaster preparedness
The disaster preparedness project described is based upon work supported by Rhode Island Sea Grant and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Grant #2015-ST-061-ND0001-01).
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