Women’s empowerment following disaster: a longitudinal study of social change.

Author:

Moreno, J. and Shaw, D.,

Editor:

First

Date:

2018

Region:

South America

Theme:

Gender, Risk, and Resilience

Language:

English

Publisher:

Springer

Full Harvard Reference:

Moreno, J. and Shaw, D., 2018. Women’s empowerment following disaster: a longitudinal study of social change. Natural hazards, 92(1), pp.205-224.

This paper examines changes in gender relations in a coastal community following the 2010 Chile earthquake and tsunami. Vulnerability and resilience are used as a conceptual framework to analyse these changes. Based on empirical evidence from a seven-year longitudinal study and quasi-ethnographic work, the paper explores changes in power relations at the different stages of the disaster and longer-term recovery as well as the conditions that fostered these changes. Findings show distinct patterns of change. First, disasters can trigger long-lasting changes that challenge historical patriarchal relations. Second, while vulnerability increases following a disaster, resilience can potentially counteract women’s vulnerability. Resilience can be a pathway to produce long-term changes in gender relations and empower women in the context of disasters.