Each year, natural disasters threaten the strength and stability of communities worldwide. Yet responses to the challenges of recovery vary greatly and in ways that aren't explained by the magnitude of the catastrophe or the amount of aid provided by national governments or the international community. The difference between resilience and disrepair, as Daniel P. Aldrich shows, lies in the depth of communities' social capital.
Building Resilience highlights the critical role of social capital in the ability of a community to withstand disaster and rebuild both the infrastructure and the ties that are at the foundation of any community. Aldrich examines the post-disaster responses of four distinct communities—Tokyo following the 1923 earthquake, Kobe after the 1995 earthquake, Tamil Nadu after the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, and New Orleans post-Katrina—and finds that those with robust social networks were better able to coordinate recovery. In addition to quickly disseminating information and financial and physical assistance, communities with an abundance of social capital were able to minimize the migration of people and valuable resources out of the area.
With governments increasingly overstretched and natural disasters likely to increase in frequency and intensity, a thorough understanding of what contributes to efficient reconstruction is more important than ever. Building Resilience underscores a critical component of an effective response.
Ph.D. Harvard University, Political Science (2005)
M.A. Harvard University, Political Science (2001)
M.A. University of California at Berkeley, Asian Studies (1998)
B.A. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Asian Studies and Japanese (1996)
Daniel P. Aldrich is an associate professor of political science at Purdue University who is on leave as a Fulbright research fellow at the University of Tokyo's Economics Department for the academic year 2012-2013 and who was an American Association for the Advancement of Science fellow at USAID during the 2011-2012 academic year. He has been a Visiting Scholar at the University of Tokyo's Law Faculty in Japan, an Advanced Research Fellow at Harvard University's Program on US-Japan Relations, a Visiting Researcher at Centre Américain, Sciences Po in Paris, France and a Visiting Professor at the Tata Institute for Disaster Management in Mumbai, India. He is a board member of the journals Asian Politics and Policy and Risk Hazards and Crisis in Public Policy and a Mansfield U.S. Japan Network for the Future Alumnus. He is the section organizer for the American Political Science Association's Disasters and Crises Related Group.
His research interests include post-disaster recovery, the siting of controversial facilities, the interaction between civil society and the state, and the socialization of women and men through experience. His work has been discussed in New York Times, CNN , the State Department's Media Hub, the National Bureau of Asian Research, WBEZ's WorldView, National Public Radio, The New Republic, MSNBC's Last Word, National Public Radio, NPR Radio programs, the New York Times (and again in the NYT) , The Oriental Economist, Bloomberg News, Voice of America, The Kudlow Report, Security Management, Reuters, Nikkei Business, ESPN, the Monkey Cage, WSBT News Radio, Marginal Revolution, German newspapers, Italian blogs, French NGO blogs, Slate, The Daily Beast, Reflexiones Finales, Her Campus, Sara Schonhardt's blog, Philippine Daily Inquirer, and numerous regional media outlets. On May 2011 the Purdue Exponent named him among the "Top 5 Professors who have influenced international and national events." In July 2012 his New York Times Op-Ed on disaster recovery was named as one of the five best columns in the Atlantic Wire.