Community perceptions of bushfire risk

Cottrell, Alison, Bushnell, Sally L., Spillman, Margaret E., Newton, Judy, Lowe, David J., and Balcombe, Luke J. (2008) Community perceptions of bushfire risk. In: Handmer, John, and Haynes, Katharine, (eds.) Community Bushfire Safety. CSIRO PUBLISHING, Collingwood, VIC, Australia, pp. 11-20.

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Abstract

The public often view and evaluate risk differently from researchers and experts. Understanding how the public construct their perceptions of risk can greatly improve risk communication, and direct risk reduction strategies most appropriately. This chapter explores the social construction of risk in two peri-urban bushfire-prone communities in Queensland. These case studies were undertaken in 2005 using a multiplemethods approach, which included group interviews with community and fire brigade members, and a community survey. While there are common factors that can similarly influence perceptions of bushfire risks within and between communities, there are often local-based issues unique to a community that have important implications for bushfire management. Through understanding and clarifying fire issues in communities, fire managers can address problems affecting bushfire risk mitigation in their local cOl1ullUnily. Engaging the community through a number of means could help considerably. The community should be viewed as a resource - communities have the capacity to act, despite vulnerabilities.

Item ID: 7330
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
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The attached references file includes all references for this and other chapters in this book.

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ISBN: 978-0-643-09426-0
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2010 03:17
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1604 Human Geography > 160403 Social and Cultural Geography @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9599 Other Cultural Understanding > 959999 Cultural Understanding not elsewhere classified @ 50%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9402 Government and Politics > 940202 Electoral Systems @ 50%
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