School disaster resilience assessment in the affected areas of 2011 East Japan earthquake and tsunami

Koichi Shiwaku, Yasutaka Ueda, Yukihiko Oikawa, Rajib Shaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


A school is considered to be the core of the community in many countries, and school plays a vital role in disaster issues, both in terms of preparedness and post-disaster recovery. An integrated resilience assessment called school disaster resilience assessment (SDRA) was applied in the post-disaster recovery context in the city of Kesennuma, in Tohoku region of Japan. The city was impacted heavily by the East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, and several schools were affected in the city. SDRA, which is an integrated tool to understand the overall disaster resilience of the school system, consists of five dimensions: physical conditions, human resources, institutional issues, external relationships, and natural conditions. Each dimension has three parameters, and each parameter has five variables. The data are collected for 75 variables. Application of SDRA in 31 schools of the city points out the importance of strengthening the relationship between school and community, and enhancing the involvement of various stakeholders in the planning process. This is significant in the recovery process due to the dynamic nature of the community, and the school–community relationship needs to evolve accordingly with the dynamism of city’s recovery. Experiences from the other city of similar size, which was affected by disasters 11 years back, and has carried out innovative disaster education program, suggest that in order to enhance school’s resilience, not only schools but also local government needs to make efforts for school disaster management and community-based disaster management. Periodic assessment in disaster recovery process is required so that appropriate activities and policies can be adopted, and the results can be visible on the ground.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-365
Number of pages33
JournalNatural Hazards
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016 May 1
Externally publishedYes


  • School disaster management
  • School disaster resilience
  • School disaster resilience assessment (SDRA)
  • School–community linkage
  • The East Japan earthquake and tsunami

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)


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