Who is Vulnerable? Vulnerability and Disasters in the Pacific

It was a hot and muggy day. I listened to people recount stories of their experience of the flash flood that had happened six months earlier. One man who had previously lost his legs stated, “When the flood happened my family carried me and ran.” He went onto talk about how powerless and fragile it made him feel. Not only could he not help his loved ones as they fled, but saving him had also become a struggle for them.Read more

The Respect Principle -Fertile or Corrosive- Key to Peace in Mindanao

This article explores the idea of the respect principle which if understood -in policy and development practice- would have major impact for peace in Mindanao.  Short-term justice must look towards long-term flourishing. Nine months ago, I did research titled “Flourishing Amid Conflict” in Mindanao. Within this research, I worked with Yakan (residents of Basilan Island with a majority of Yakans identifying as Muslim by birth and choice). They defined what they viewed as the good life. The participants explained howRead more

Degrees of Separation and Disaster Response in the Pacific

The theory of “six degrees of separation” is people connect to each other –globally- within a chain of six relationships. In the Solomon Islands there is a smaller degree of separation. The smaller degree of separation affects the social impact of disasters. Currently, the concepts in this article are based on observation. Further research -to create a base of evidence- is needed to validate or invalidate solutions I pose. Flash Flood in the Solomon Islands April 3, 2014 there wasRead more