Study: Social Networks Community Resilience Chronic Disasters Ecuador

Posted on March 19, 2014 • Filed under: Ecuador

Modeling Social Networks
and Community Resilience in Chronic
Disasters: Case Studies from Volcanic
Areas in Ecuador and Mexico

From —- 2.4.2 Ecuador Networks
It is clear that the chronic conditions associated with the eruptions of Mount
Tungurahua have had a profound bearing on all communities in the region. The
impacts appear to be cumulative with conditions for many individuals getting
significantly more difficult. For example, household conditions, physical health,
stress levels were all worse in the resettlement and evacuated communities than in
the exposed, non-evacuated community. In part, this appeared to be related to
social networks and differences were evident between Ecuador and Mexico. Those
dense personal networks with strong ties and close relationships tended to be
associated with greater levels of support and hence recovery, than those with
looser networks. More support, such as food and supplies, emotional support, and
information, was reported as having been provided in these networks.
The dissimilarities between established and new communities can be highlighted
by looking at Penipe Viejo, Penipe Nuevo and Pusuca. Respondents in
Penipe Nuevo exhibited significantly higher levels of stress and depression than
those in Penipe Viejo (Fig. 2.2), although they also reported higher levels of
support. Also, those social networks with higher densities and where ties were
closer were negatively correlated with stress and depression in Penipe Nuevo,
which suggests that more dense networks with close ties are related to lower
depression levels in this site. In Pusuca, however, increased closeness was correlated
with higher levels of stress and difficulties in functioning.
In the resettlement communities, it is possible that traditional support networks
had broken down as individuals relocated and that new connections had not been
fully established. In the resettlement community of Penipe Nuevo, for example,
new residents had, for the most part, come from a number of different communities
and probably did not know each other prior to relocation. An exception was the
other resettlement site, Pusuca, where the new site was inhabited largely by residents
from one community, which suggests that resettlement strategies may play
significant roles in maintaining sustainability and fostering resilience.
Those networks with only a few unique connections, such as found in type b,
were especially important with individuals receiving higher levels of support
(material, emotional and informational) than those with more complex networks.
Such relationships were not found in exposed or evacuated communities. Also,
Fig. 2.2 Incidence of some
PTSD symptoms in Penipe
Viejo and Penipe Nuevo

2 Modeling Social Networks and Community Resilience in Chronic Disasters 21
males received more support in the resettlement communities than females,
whereas there were no significant differences in the other communities between
males and females. Support from families differed amongst the communities.
Evacuated individuals cited the highest levels of family support, followed by those
in the exposed community. Again, it appears that social networks had been negatively
impacted by the resettlement and it may take time before new relationships
are constructed. Read Article – Requires Purchase

Share This Story
  • Print
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Twitter
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Add to favorites
  • email