Social Resilience Perspective of “Build Back Better” on the Culture and Livelihoods of the Poftonga Veoveo Tribe in Post-Typhoon Morakot Taiwan

Authors: Wei-Cheng Lin*, Graduate School of Disaster Management, Central Police University, Taiwan, Pei-Shan Sonia Lin, Graduate School of Disaster Management, Central Police University, Taiwan
Topics: Hazards, Risks, and Disasters
Keywords: post-disaster reconstruction, indigenous culture, recovery, Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/3/2019
Start / End Time: 2:35 PM / 4:15 PM
Room: Roosevelt 3, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


In 2009, Typhoon Morakot severely affected indigenous tribes in Taiwan. In the post-disaster recovery period, relocation to permanent houses is the main policy for damaged villages. Since indigenous people have strong ties to the land they live on, the resettlement policy greatly impacts their lives and neglects their culture, livelihoods, and man-land relationships. It contradicts the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction of 2015, which notes that to “Build Back Better” (BBB) in recovery is a top priority in disaster management. However, the BBB framework does not consider cultural implications, which we think should be the base for post-disaster recovery. This study looks to the Poftonga Veoveo settlement to examine how to relocate an indigenous tribe in accordance with BBB principles of cultural and livelihood development. Poftonga Veoveo is a permanent settlement of indigenous Tsou people, consisting of eight tribes affected by Typhoon Morakot. This study uses semi-structured interviews and participant observation to collect data and uses social resilience theory as an analysis perspective. Results show that indigenous culture-centered tourism activities could help rebuild livelihoods and economies during recovery phases. It also enhances group identity and makes the recombined settlement become a new Tsou tribe in people’s mindset. Activating indigenous culture and using it to develop local industries could improve community cohesion and build robust social resilience for people in dynamic environments.

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