The role of individuals’ risk representations in risk management - case-study on lahars in Arequipa (Peru)

Carine Heitz, Miriam Nagata Shimabuku

Producción científica: Contribución a una revistaArtículorevisión exhaustiva

4 Citas (Scopus)


Background: In risk-prone areas, measuring risk representation can help implementing communication and disclosing information among the population, in order to increase individual initiatives to protect themselves and their properties or to provide a better knowledge of the appropriate measures to be adopted during or after a disaster. The perceived legitimacy of authorities disclosing information is a key issue in individuals’ beliefs. Then, to compel the population to follow the authorities’ recommendations and to adopt the suitable behaviour in case of a disaster, the information needs to be targeted, in order to take into account (a) the individuals’ representation of the risk they incur and (b) the level of legitimacy received from the authorities in charge of risk management. Consequently, the question of the modalities to qualify the relations between information and representation and risk management arises? Results: To solve this issue at the foot of El Misti Volcano (Arequipa, Peru), we conducted surveys in lahars (debris flows on and from volcanic slopes)-prone areas and unexposed ones. The methodology is based on self-administrated questionnaires (N = 209). The results show that respondents endow legitimacy in risk reduction (more than 70%) to a national authority (Defensa Civil) in charge of the management of risk in the city of Arequipa. More than 64% of the respondents consider that they are not sufficiently informed on the behaviours to adopt in case of a disaster. It leads to a weak implication of the respondents in the adoption of individual initiatives to protect themselves (23%) and to important expectations towards authorities’ actions in decreasing their vulnerability (50%). Conclusion: Such results are relevant to other context as mentioned in the literature: knowing the nature of the link between self-protection, prevention policies and national regulation is essential to decide the best way to manage risk.
Idioma originalEspañol
PublicaciónGeoenvironmental Disasters
EstadoPublicada - 1 dic. 2017

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