Disaster risk reduction needs cultural inputs

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A new United Nations-backed report shows that many disaster risk reduction (DRR) programs fail because they do not take into account “cultural causes of vulnerability.” The “World Disasters Report (WDR) 2014: Focus on culture and risk,” published by the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) and Red Crescent Societies, looks at how culture affects DRR and how disasters and risk influence culture. According to IFRC, most people who live in places that are exposed to serious hazards are aware of the risks they face, yet they still live there to earn their living. Also, culture and beliefs in spirits or gods, or simple fatalism, enable people to live with risks and make sense of their lives in dangerous places.

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