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Disaster conversations: intersecting perspectives on cross-cultural disaster research

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journal contribution
posted on 01.11.2021, 15:41 by Susie GoodallSusie Goodall, Zainab Khalid, Monia Del-Pinto
Purpose This paper aims to demonstrate the importance of conversation among disaster studies researchers who may be positioned at times and to varying degrees as both insiders and outsiders in relation to the contexts in which they work. Three key questions are explored: how we identify with and relate to people in our study areas, who we do research for and what this means for knowledge creation and research practice.
Design Prompted by the Power Prestige and Forgotten Values manifesto (2019), the authors conversed with one another by email and video call, asking questions that triggered reflection. The emerging themes informed the key questions and the structure of the paper. We write with three individual voices to highlight the element of dialogue and our different experiences.
Findings Sharing in depth with other researchers from different cultural and disciplinary backgrounds created space to both listen and find a voice. Emerging themes were positionality, how knowledge is used and implications for research practice. Researchers are part of a living system with the potential to serve, exploit or damage. Knowledge is generated at multiple scales and we can act as a bridge between people and policy makers, using networks.
Practical implications We remain open and unbiased to ‘new’ local/contextual knowledge, adopting the attitude of a learner. Knowledge creation should focus on pragmatic outcomes such as informing emergency planning.
Value We use a novel dialogical approach to demonstrate the value of conversation among researchers from different backgrounds that enables them to question and challenge each other in a supportive environment. This leads to deeper understanding of our role as cross-cultural researchers and reveals unifying questions and implications for research practice.


Natural Environment Research Council, UK, (No: NE/L002493/1: CENTA Doctoral Training Programme

NE/R000069/1: Geoscience for Sustainable Futures

Gansu Science and Technology Department (No: 19ZD2FA002)

National Natural Science Foundation of China (No: 41661144046)



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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Disaster Prevention and Management: an international journal










AM (Accepted Manuscript)

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This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Disaster Prevention and Management: an international journal and the definitive published version is available at

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Miss Susie Goodall. Deposit date: 29 October 2021