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Theses Master's

Associations between Sense of Community and Perceived Recovery from the Deepwater Horizon Explosion

Uchida, Mai

Natural disasters may bring devastating effects on the environment and humans. On April 20th, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, killing 11 people and spilling more than 4 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The spill caused extensive damage to marine and wildlife habitats, the fishing and tourism industries, and the Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida coastlines. Although people who lived in the area were deeply affected by the oil spill, most funded research have focused on the environmental issues, such as the effects of the spill on the marine ecology. However, within weeks after the explosion, the National Center for Disaster Preparedness initiated the Gulf Coast Population Impact Project (GCPI) to track the effects of the spill on the people who lived in the affected area. This thesis is a part of that project. The data for the thesis take a survey format in which respondents were asked about the health effects from the spill. A limitation is that these self-reported diagnoses were not confirmed by medical professionals. However, the dataset includes some information that medical records cannot provide, including data about the respondents’ location and sense of community. In this paper, potential association between people’s sense of community and their effects on perceived recovery at the individual, household, and community levels are investigated. This research is significant because it may help to identify factors that promote resiliency through community building towards natural disasters in the future.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Urban Planning
Thesis Advisors
Freeman, Lance M.
Degree
M.S., Columbia University
Published Here
June 29, 2018