Malalgoda, Chamindi, Amaratunga, Dilanthi and Haigh, Richard (2014) Challenges in Creating a Disaster Resilient Built Environment. Procedia Economics and Finance, 18. pp. 736-744. ISSN 2212-5671

With the increase in occurrences of high impact disasters, the concept of risk reduction and resilience is widely recognised.
Recent disasters have highlighted the exposure of urban cities to natural disasters and emphasised the need of making cities resilient to disasters. Built environment plays an important role in every city and need to be functional and operational at a time of a disaster and is expected to provide protection to people and other facilities. However, recent disasters have highlighted the
vulnerability of the built assets to natural disasters and therefore it is very much important to focus on creating a disaster resilient
built environment within cities. However the process of making a disaster resilient built environment is a complex process where
many challenges are involved. Accordingly the paper aims at exploring the challenges involved in building a disaster resilient built environment. Paper discusses the findings of some expert interviews and three case studies which have been conducted in Sri Lanka by selecting three cities which are potentially vulnerable to threats posed by natural hazards. The empirical evidence
revealed, lack of regulatory frameworks; unplanned cities and urbanisation; old building stocks and at risk infrastructure; unauthorised structures; institutional arrangements; inadequate capacities of municipal councils; lack of funding; inadequacy of qualified human resources; and corruption and unlawful activities as major challenges for creating a disaster resilient built environment within Sri Lankan cities. The paper proposes a set of recommendations to address these prevailing concerns and to build a more resilient built environment within cities.

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