Effects of Reconstruction Planning on the Utility of Social Capital in Minamisanriku, Miyagi after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake

Kayleigh Ward
2021 Social Sciences  
This mixed-methods community-based participatory research project is set in the rural coastal community of Minamisanriku, Miyagi. Ten years after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake, this study investigates whether and to what extent social capital acts as an asset to drive economic growth, recovery, collaboration, and decision making for residents to address social and economic problems as they perceive them. The connection between reconstruction planning and recovery is also investigated.
more » ... mary data collection methods include a conceptual social capital mapping exercise (n = 200) to document resident bonding, bridging, and linking capital relationships (n = 1994), and semi-structured interviews (n = 70) to capture how residents with high linking capital do or do not utilize it. Participant observation and secondary data analysis contextualized resident maps and interviews. Overall, the study results suggest that the utility of social capital is highly sensitive to the cultural norms of social and power hierarchies, that it fortifies in group–out group dynamics, and enables residents to address immediate needs, but lacks the ability to enable residents to use the resources and information entrenched in their social networks and other structures effectively due to intermediating issues of unequal development of social and economic infrastructure across districts and other community disparities that emerge through the reconstruction process.
doi:10.3390/socsci10070254 doaj:cf48da377e5344689fa80d764210f264 fatcat:akfledm4rbbkpkfnjsvqwqb66m