Developing Frameworks to Understand Disaster Causation: From Forensic Disaster Investigation to Risk Root Cause Analysis

Fraser, Arabella; Paterson, Shona and Pelling, Mark (2016). Developing Frameworks to Understand Disaster Causation: From Forensic Disaster Investigation to Risk Root Cause Analysis. Journal of Extreme Events, 3(2), article no. 1650008.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1142/S2345737616500081

Abstract

The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 calls for science to support policy move toward more holistic solutions to disaster risk. This paper outlines an original framework to promote inter-disciplinary research into disaster causation, identifying the basis for holistic solutions. The PEARL Risk Root Cause Analysis framework responds to limits identified in the established FORensic INvestigations of disasters (FORIN) approach to root cause analysis. The paper documents a systematic review of the FORIN approach as a starting point for the development of the PEARL framework. The proposed PEARL framework offers a broad and adaptable conceptual, methodological and practical approach. In particular, we demonstrate the centrality of governance, including the role of disaster risk management in risk creation, of bringing historical insights into contemporary and future scenarios planning and of integrating research methods. These core elements can assist in repositioning science to better support the goals of the Sendai Framework.

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