Post-Disaster Housing Recovery: The Promise and Peril of Social Capital

Anuradha Mukherji
2014 Journal of Civil Society  
Researchers argue that social networks based on shared values, trust, and norms can facilitate collective action, and such social capital increases the ability of communities to recover after a disaster, implying that the presence of social capital ensures collective community action after a disaster and enables recovery. Drawing from comparative case studies of Bhuj and Bachhau, urban centres impacted by the 2001 Gujarat earthquake in India, this study presents a nuanced view of the role of
more » ... w of the role of social capital during post-disaster recovery. It argues that it is important to consider community contexts that are inherent to the amount of social capital available and the use of resources through social networks. The study demonstrates that strong internal bonds based on mutual trust did not necessarily lead to collective action for post-disaster housing recovery among communities in Bhuj and Bachhau. Moreover, the amount of social capital available through bonding networks differed among communities, depending upon their pre-disaster networks and the resources embedded in them. The study findings expand upon the role of social capital during disaster recovery; in particular, they contribute to public policy debates on the ability of communities to engage in collective action to meet post-disaster housing needs.
doi:10.1080/17448689.2014.885787 fatcat:756w7axutfal7d2b7jspeo2npu