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Resilient Recovery: A systems analysis of disaster recovery in Canada

Benson, Carly (2022) Resilient Recovery: A systems analysis of disaster recovery in Canada. [MRP]

Item Type: MRP
Creators: Benson, Carly

The frequency and severity of disasters caused by natural hazards and extreme weather is increasing across Canada. Each year, more communities face devastation, disruption, and the difficult task of rebuilding. However, the process by which communities pick up the pieces – disaster recovery – is currently failing to deliver more resilient communities. In Canada, disaster recovery prioritizes the rapid return to pre-disaster conditions without consideration for the changing risk environment and the ways in which recovery can enable communities to better prepare for the future.
Our commitment to this failing system has long-term consequences. With the cost of disasters dramatically increasing, how we rebuild communities contributes to their vulnerability or resilience in the future. Because of the static nature of physical structures, with building and infrastructure lifespans of more than fifty years, recovery locks in the risk profile of a community’s built environment for generations.
This project examines the barriers and opportunities for municipalities, the level of government closest to the individuals and businesses devastated by disaster, to integrate systematic disaster risk reduction into recovery and thereby rebuild more resilient communities. Using systems thinking informed by foresight and human-centered design research methods, this study aims to identify the constraints and leverage points for changing our approach to recovery in Canada so it prioritizes resilience to future risks instead of recreating the past.
Resilient Recovery: A systems analysis begins by describing disaster trends in Canada and the factors increasing disaster risk, then traces of evolution of the disaster recovery system and analyzes the dynamics at play in the current system. It explores emerging forces of change and the implications these emergent issues may have for recovery, then concludes with an analysis of the system’s leverage points, considerations for how foresight could enhance the process, and a proposed pathway towards transformational change.

Date: 12 May 2022
Uncontrolled Keywords: disaster recovery, resilience, disaster risk reduction, emergency management, systems thinking, foresight, Canada, planning, communities, infrastructure
Divisions: Graduate Studies > Strategic Foresight and Innovation
Date Deposited: 12 May 2022 18:23
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2022 20:00
URI: https://openresearch.ocadu.ca/id/eprint/3745

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