Urban Resilience to Climate-Related Disasters: Emerging Lessons from Resilience Policy and Practice in Coastal Tourism Cities

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Torabi, Elnaz
Dedekorkut-Howes, Aysin
Howes, Michael
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Filho, WL
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2017
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With climate change the intensity, duration and/or frequency of extreme weather events are likely to increase. Local governments around the world are at the forefront of adaptation to these impacts but they struggle to respond. This is in part due to ambiguity of core concepts such as vulnerability and resilience, which makes it difficult to articulate clear policy objectives. Tourism cities are particularly vulnerable because of their geography and highly variable populations. The purpose of this paper is to understand what makes coastal tourism cities vulnerable in the face of climate-related disasters. It aims to capture such vulnerabilities and analyse their implications for building resilience through urban policy and practice. The approach taken involves interviews with key stakeholders in two case studies located on the Pacific Rim: Australia’s Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. This paper shows that while vulnerabilities are in the main locked-in by historical economy-driven development patterns, there is also a lack of common comprehension of socioeconomic underpinnings of vulnerability in planning. This influences resilience building strategies for cities. The findings suggest the need for an in-depth understanding of vulnerabilities as an important step towards integrating policy and practice for adaptation at the local level.

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Climate Change Adaptation in Pacific Countries: Fostering Resilience and Improving the Quality of Life
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Other environmental sciences not elsewhere classified
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