Understanding the factors that influence resilience in a cyclone prone population

Scovell, M.D., McShane, C.J., and Swinbourne, A.L. (2016) Understanding the factors that influence resilience in a cyclone prone population. In: [Presented at the International Congress of Behavioural Medicine 2017]. From: International Congress of Behavioural Medicine 2016, 7-10 December 2016, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.

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Introduction: Research in the field of climate change has identified that the severity of extreme weather events is likely to increase. As these events can have detrimental effects to both physical and mental health, it is important to understand the factors that promote resilience. Past research suggests that social resilience to hazards encompasses both the avoidance of losses (through preparation) and the ability to recover with minimal social disruptions if disaster a occurs. The purpose of this research was to identify the psychosocial factors that influence social resilience in a high risk population in North Queensland.

Methods: Participants (n=356) living in Townsville (n=309) and Cairns (n=47) were recruited via social media to participate in a questionnaire. The questionnaire assessed variables including: age, homeownership, social capital, self-efficacy, preparedness, resilience, psychological distress. Hierarchical multiple regressions were used to identify factors that predicted preparedness and individual level resilience.

Results: No significant relationship was found between preparedness and psychological resilience. However, it was found that self-efficacy (although not related to preparedness) was correlated to both resilience and psychological distress and was the strongest predictor in the multiple regression model.

Conclusions: These results suggest that in populations where weather threats are relatively severe and common, different factors influencedifferent components of social resilience. As high risk populations are usually more prepared (through experience) there should be a separation of focus between preparing for the event and preparing for the outcome. This study suggests that preparing for the outcome (promoting individual resilience) may be facilitated by increasing self-efficacy, locus of control and decreasing psychological distress.

Item ID: 49759
Item Type: Conference Item (Poster)
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Date Deposited: 03 Aug 2017 00:25
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170113 Social and Community Psychology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 87 CONSTRUCTION > 8798 Environmentally Sustainable Construction > 879899 Environmentally Sustainable Construction not elsewhere classified @ 30%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920407 Health Protection and/or Disaster Response @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9610 Natural Hazards > 961010 Natural Hazards in Urban and Industrial Environments @ 40%
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