Gender inequality in post disaster reconstruction: Does it prevail?

Nirooja Thurairajah, Dilanthi Amaratunga, Richard Haigh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Dramatic increases in the occurrence of natural disasters and their immense impact on physical and social aspects of communities raised the attention of many for innovative solutions. Although disasters cease many opportunities and lives, the lives of survivors do not cease in the disaster affected areas. Even though many governments and other national and international institutions heavily involve in post disaster reconstruction, the success of those intitiative remains in doubt due to lack of community involvement. It has been highlighted that involvement of communities could not only provide more effective solutions but also develop resilient communities to cope up with challenges during future disaster events. There are many challenges that men and women face within post disaster reconstruction. However, due to internal and external vulnerabilities and incapabilities women tend to face many challenges during post disaster phase. Further, although disaster management efforts are designed to benefit both men and women, in real practice a larger share of benefits and resources goes to men and women continue to remain marginalised. Many organisations have recognised the need to enhance women's position. Earlier study has found that post disaster reconstruction could provide opportunities not only to develop affected areas but also to further enhance their capacities. Therefore, post disaster reconstruction could be used as an opportunity to address women's challenges and enhance their state within the communities. Although studies have highlighted the existence of gender disparity within post disaster reconstruction, they barely identify relevant empirical evidence. Hence, this study aims to examine whether gender inequality prevails within post disaster reconstruction. This study has been based on a theoretical as well as practical ideas obtained through a comprehensive literature review and interviews carried out among experts within the practice in Sri Lanka.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCOBRA 2010
Subtitle of host publicationConstruction, Building and Real Estate Research Conference of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventConstruction, Building and Real Estate Research Conference of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors - Dauphine Université Paris, Paris, France
Duration: 2 Sep 20103 Sep 2010 (Conference Information)


ConferenceConstruction, Building and Real Estate Research Conference of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Abbreviated titleCOBRA 2010
OtherContributions are invited for the themed session on Disaster Management that will be held as part of the RICS COBRA 2010 Conference aims to stimulate ideas arising from research by exploring the range of perspectives from which the construction industry is able to contribute towards improved resilience to disasters and by facilitating the dissemination of the existing knowledge base.
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