A Gender-sensitive Analysis of Natural Disasters - The Case of St. Lorenzen in Austria

Doris Damyanovic, Karin Weber, Britta Fuchs and Christiane Brandenburg

In this paper, we present a gender-sensitive analysis of a natural disaster from a planning perspective, illustrated by a debris flow in Styria, Austria, in 2012. The introduced findings were based on twenty semi-structured interviews with the residents considering the cycle of integrated risk management. The gender-sensitive research design identified various aspects that can enhance or decrease the capacity and vulnerability on the individual level. The gender-sensitive analysis showed that the vulnerabilities and capacities of people vary during the different phases of the risk cycle (prevention, coping, recovery). The ability to cope with natural hazards and risks varies highly, and this variability can only be revealed and be understood differentiated by a gender+ approach. At the same time, socio-economic factors and age of the community members have to be taken into account. Further research is needed to analyse and integrate gender+ specific needs and capacities in the field of disaster risk management effectively.

2016/1 43-51