Authors: Sprague, Teresa
Title: Understanding the intangible
Other Titles: Improving "good" risk governance for water-related extremes by connecting EU policy and multiple case study comparison
Language (ISO): en
Abstract: The changing intensity and frequency of hydro-meteorological (interpreted roughly as "water-related ") hazards and the risk of extreme hazardous events is highly variable, riddled with uncertainty, and requires flexibility in the updating and revision of risk assessment and management strategies. These strategies must overcome challenges posed by a changing environment, and require a place-based approach for establishing an understanding of the local context for disaster risk reduction (DRR) and in trying to develop tailor-made strategies for a local, spatial context. This is particularly relevant given that how risks are handled and defined strongly depends upon this context, which is determined through physical characteristics as well as socio and cultural values. The basic premise for research presented in this dissertation is that DRR is achieved through minimizing risk governance deficits, encouraging good governance practices, and taking a place-based approach to better understand contextual factors and to be able to consequentially respond to the challenges posed by changing environments. Under this premise, a conceptual framework and an analysis tool were created to develop an understanding of "good" risk governance and how this can be operationalized and analyzed within different spatial contexts. The tool itself is based on an extensive policy analysis conducted using MAXQDA qualitative data analysis software to code and derive a category and indicator set for "good" risk governance at the EU level. This level was chosen as a common denominator for the analysis of on-the-ground practices and connects conceptual, policy, and in-practice understandings of "good" risk governance through its use in the analysis and comparison of over 100 qualitative interviews completed in four case study sites. The four cases, represented by catchment based delineations, are divided into two main cases (represented by the Barcelonnette catchment in Alpes des Haute Provence, France and Nehoiu catchment in Buzău County, Romania) and two satellite case (represented by the Fella River catchment in Friuli-Venezia-Giulia region, Italy and the Wieprzówka catchment in Małopolska, Poland). Main cases were chosen and results presented individually to demonstrate the depth of the use of the analysis tool; while the satellite in combination with the main cases were used to demonstrate the cross-case comparative potential and to amass findings through a multi-case breadth. Results reflect upon the analysis tool itself and the understanding of how different and often intangible principles of "good" risk governance can be interpreted and connected to in-practice strategies. The research concludes with recommendations for both the cases and, for the issues found in common across cases, at the EU level for future policy development in advancing the understanding and connection of risk governance to in-practice strategies and issues for local spatial contexts.
Subject Headings: Good governance
Risk governance
Policy analysis
Multiple case study
Water-related extremes
Spatial context
Policy Analyse
Multiple Fallstudie
Hydrologische Extremwetterereignisse
Räumlicher Kontext
Subject Headings (RSWK): Naturkatastrophe
Issue Date: 2016
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