Evolving Disaster Governance Paradigms in Nepal


This article aims to explain various disaster governance paradigms that have emerged and currently exist in Nepal. A disaster governance paradigm is a comprehensive set of prevailing and institutionalized ideas that shape disaster plans and policies that eventually are implemented on the ground. This article shows how disaster governance paradigms have evolved between 1982 and 2019, using policy document analysis and semi-structured interviews with key policy actors. The study found that four major disaster governance paradigms exist in Nepal – (1) response and recovery; (2) disaster risk reduction and management; (3) integrated climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction; and (4) federalized disaster risk reduction. The results of this study show that multiple state and non-state actors such as key government ministries, NGOs, INGOs, and other civil society actors are competing over resources and there is an ongoing administrative struggle for promoting different disaster governance paradigms. There has been a push from various civil society actors to prioritize disaster risk reduction in Nepal. Finally, we conclude that it is too early to assert that the decentralization process will be able to reduce disaster risk for vulnerable communities, especially with the federalization of Nepal’s disaster governance.




International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction

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