Natural Hazards: Explanation and Integration

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9781572300620: Natural Hazards: Explanation and Integration

Taking stock of what is known about the geophysical and human aspects of natural hazards, this volume provides a cross-disciplinary framework for managing these often cataclysmic events. Unlike traditional texts that utilize a hazard-by-hazard approach, the book integrates perspectives from the physical and social sciences to identify and describe general principles that can enhance our understanding of the physical, social, technical, and economic forces inherent in extreme geophysical events. Focusing on the physical characteristics hazards share, such as magnitude, duration, and frequency, the authors consider individual and community perceptions of these events and explore the effects of different attitudes on behavior and response. In its pragmatic rethinking of hazards policy, the book brings to the fore political and economic factors and provides richly detailed examples of planning-based approaches to hazards management.

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About the Author:

Graham A. Tobin, PhD, is Professor and Chair of the Department of Geography at the University of South Florida. He received his B.A. from the University of Durham, England and his Ph.D. from the University of Strathclyde, Scotland. Previously, he taught at the University of Sheffield, England, the University of Iowa, and the University of Minnesota, Duluth, USA. He has published books, chapters and numerous articles on different dimensions of natural hazards and water resource problems, focusing particularly on socio-economic aspects of flooding, water resources management, and groundwater policy issues.

Burrell E. Montz, PhD, is Professor of Geography and Environmental Studies and Director of the Environmental Studies Program at Binghamton University, New York. She received her B.A. from Mary Washington College, her M.S. from Oklahoma State University, and her Ph.D. from the University of Colorado. Dr. Montz has been involved in natural hazards research in the United States and in New Zealand, with a focus on economic and environmental impacts as well as on policy and planning applications.

Review:

"This book is a marvelous addition to the hazards literature. With its holistic perspective and the integration of physical processes and human activities, Tobin and Montz embody the human dimensions of natural hazards. The treatment places Natural Hazards: Explanation and Integration into a class by itself, as most of the current texts provide a hazard-by-hazard approach, with very few linkages across hazards or forays into the human dimensions--perception, response, recovery, and public policy. Tobin and Montz, both highly respected hazards researchers, take a more blended perspective and highlight the commonalities among hazards events in terms of physical processes and characteristics, individual perception, community response, economic impacts, and public policy. I look forward to using this book in my Hazards course." --Susan L. Cutter, Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Geography, University of South Carolina

"A monumental effort. The book uses numerous examples and case studies and does an exemplary job of covering the globe. Synthesizing a vast body of literature, it provides insight into the key perplexing questions in the field." --Eve Gruntfest, Ph.D., University of Colorado, Colorado Springs

"Original and lucid. Clearly, Tobin and Montz have taken a new perspective, providing an excellent synthesis of a wide variety of hazards research." --John A. Cross, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh

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