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A feminist vision for transformative change to disaster risk reduction policies and practices

Yadav, P; Saville, N; Arjyal, A; Baral, S; Kostkova, P; Fordham, M; (2021) A feminist vision for transformative change to disaster risk reduction policies and practices. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction , 54 , Article 102026. 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2020.102026. Green open access

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Abstract

Gender has received increased attention in disaster risk reduction (DRR) policies and practices over the past three decades. However, a critical analysis raises a number of questions: has the attention to gender brought transformative change to the lives of people, especially women and sexual minorities in all their diversity? To what extent has the inclusion of a gender perspective in DRR challenged the root causes of vulnerability and marginalization? Do the current gender sensitive DRR policies and practices have transformative potential? In this paper, we explore some of these questions with particular reference to the recent Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) Act 2017 and current DRR practices in Nepal in which gender has been included. We present findings from three research projects, undertaken between 2016 and 2019 in six locations in Nepal. These comprised 105 individual interviews, 11 group interviews and 3 focus group discussions (FGDs) with internally displaced women; pregnant and newly delivered women; health and community workers; policy makers, political leaders and organisations working on DRR. We argue that, despite increased attention to gender, current DRR policies and practices do little to challenge existing, unequal social and institutional structures; instead, they accommodate the gender status quo. We suggest that in order for transformative social change to occur, we require a transformative vision; one that allows us to see the biases and problems within the current DRR policies and practices and allows us to imagine our future differently. A feminist vision offers that possibility.

Type: Article
Title: A feminist vision for transformative change to disaster risk reduction policies and practices
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2020.102026
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdrr.2020.102026
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.
Keywords: Gender and disaster, Disaster risk reduction policy and practice, Women in disaster, Feminist vision for DRR, Nepal
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Inst for Risk and Disaster Reduction
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10118131
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