Entry Points for Addressing Justice and Politics in Urban Flood Adaptation Decision Making

Hallie Eakin, Jagadish Parajuli, Yamini Yogya, Bertha Hernández, and Marisa Manheim
Posted on: 5/24/2021 - Updated on: 4/11/2023

Posted by

Kathryn Braddock



Adaptation decisions are necessarily about the distribution of risk and resources and thus are inherently political, with implications for equity and justice. These concerns are increasingly recognized to be pertinent in adaptation to urban flooding. Yet, the technical orientation of many flood adaptation interventions and decision-support may make these issues less visible in flood decision-processes. We draw from recent empirical case studies to identify thematic ‘points of entry’ that can facilitate attention to issues of justice and politics in urban flood decision-support. We map these entry points to four phases of the adaptation decision-process, highlighting lines of inquiry to enable researchers to make these concerns visible in collaboration with partnering organizations and stakeholders. We argue that researchers will need to work with stakeholders to make effective use of existing approaches and methods to explicitly make the political dimensions and issues of justice visible in decision-processes.

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