Environmental and socioeconomic dynamics of the Indian Ocean tsunami in Penang, Malaysia

Benjamin Horton, Michael Bird, Thomas Birkland, Susan Cowie, Ong Jin Eong, Andrea Hawkes, Gong Wooi Khoon, Lisa Law, Colin Macgregor, Aileen Tan Shau-Hwai, Teh Tiong Sa, Zulfigar Yasin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper addresses some of the environmental and socioeconomic dimensions of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami on Penang, Malaysia. We aim to offer wide access to unique and perishable data, while at the same time providing insight to ongoing debates about hazards, vulnerability and social capital. Our social survey examines some of the dynamics that shaped the tsunami impact, response and recovery process. While in terms of lives lost Penang may not conform to arguments surrounding vulnerable environments, the recovery process is more marked by social disparities in terms of the ability to access resources. Our physical survey records local topography, flow depth and flow direction, and charts the differential impact of the tsunami. Yet measuring hazards is not a straightforward process, and relies on reflexive methodologies and eyewitness accounts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)307-324
Number of pages18
JournalSingapore Journal of Tropical Geography
Volume29
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2008

Keywords

  • emergency response
  • Malaysia
  • tsunami
  • vulnerability
  • social capital
  • DISASTER PREPAREDNESS
  • NATURAL DISASTERS
  • VULNERABILITY
  • MITIGATION
  • KNOWLEDGE
  • THAILAND
  • FIELD

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