Beatriz Maria de Loyola Hummell, Susan L. Cutter, Christopher T. Emrich. Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Brazil[J]. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 2016, 7(2): 111-122. doi: 10.1007/s13753-016-0090-9
Citation: Beatriz Maria de Loyola Hummell, Susan L. Cutter, Christopher T. Emrich. Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Brazil[J]. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 2016, 7(2): 111-122. doi: 10.1007/s13753-016-0090-9

Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Brazil

doi: 10.1007/s13753-016-0090-9

The authors would like to express their great appreciation to Dan Morath, Ronnie Schumann, Kevin Ash, Robert Gottlieb, Gregg Bowser, Juliana Lam, and other colleagues in the Hazards & Vulnerability Research Institute, University of South Carolina, for contributing valuable advice and integrating the discussions during the development of this study. We also thank the editors for their editorial review of the article.

  • Available Online: 2021-04-26
  • Although social vulnerability has recently gained attention in academic studies, Brazil lacks frameworks and indicators to assess it for the entire country. Social vulnerability highlights differences in the human capacity to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters. It varies over space and time, and among and between social groups, largely due to differences in socioeconomic and demographic characteristics. This article provides a social vulnerability index (SoVI®) replication study for Brazil and shows how SoVI® concepts and indicators were adapted to the country. SoVI® Brazil follows the place-based framework adopted in the Social Vulnerability Index initially developed for the United States. Using a principal component analysis (PCA), 45 city-level indicators were reduced to 10 factors that explain about 67 % of the variance in the data. Clearly identified spatial patterns showed a concentration of the most socially vulnerable cities in the North and Northeast regions of Brazil, as well as the social vulnerability of metropolitan areas and state capitals in the South and Southeast regions. The least vulnerable cities are mainly concentrated in the inland regions of the Southeast. Although different factors contribute to the social vulnerability in each city, the overall results confirm the social and economic disparities among Brazilian’s regions and reflect a differential vulnerability to natural hazards at local to regional scales.
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