Developing a “culture of disaster preparedness”: the citizens’ view

Sandra Appleby-Arnold*, Noellie Brockdorff, Celia Callus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
9 Downloads (Pure)


This study investigated the potential for citizens developing “cultures of disaster preparedness”, which are informed by citizens' values and experiences rather than imposed from “above”. Based on previous research we conducted during Citizen Summits in Romania, Malta, Italy and Germany, we developed a set of recommendations, which were evaluated during two final Citizen Summits held in Portugal and the Netherlands, using an electronic audience response system and focus group discussions. The results point at three main strategies, which can be expected to foster a “soft” cultural change towards disaster preparedness over time: (1) encouraging measures that build upon already existing cultural values and daily routines; (2) organising preparedness-related activities that are designed as part of citizens' everyday-life events; and (3) improving perceived self-efficacy by demonstrating how citizens’ already existing, personal everyday skills can be harnessed in disaster situations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102133
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction
Early online date5 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2021


  • Citizen summit
  • Community cohesion
  • Culture
  • Disaster preparedness
  • Self-efficacy


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