Phase of disaster cycle: Resilience as coping, withstanding

“the capacity to cope with unanticipated dangers after they have become manifest, learning to bounce back”

Wildavsky 1991, p. 77

“It is the buffer capacity or the ability of a system to absorb perturbation, or the magnitude of

disturbance that can be absorbed before a system changes its structure by changing the


Holling et al., 1995

“Local resiliency with regard to disasters means that a locale is able to withstand an extreme

natural event without suffering devastating losses, damage, diminished productivity, or

quality of life without a large amount of assistance from outside the community.”

Miletti, 1999

‘‘the ability of a system to withstand stresses of environmental loading”

Bruneau et al., 2003

“Pliability, flexibility, or elasticity to absorb the event. Resiliency is offered by types of construction, barriers, composition of the land (geological base), geography, bomb shelters, location of dwelling, etc. As resiliency increases, so does the absorbing capacity of the society and/or the environment. Resiliency is the inverse of vulnerability.”

Journ. of Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 2004

Phase of disaster cycle: Resilience as responding

“Resilience is a fundamental quality of individuals, groups and organisations, and systems as

a whole to respond productively to significant change that disrupts the expected pattern of

events without engaging in an extended period of regressive behaviour.”

Horne and Orr 1998, p. 31

“The ability to respond to singular or unique events.”

Kendra and Wachtendorf, 2003

Phase of disaster cycle: Resilience as adapting/changing

“Resilience is a measure of the recovery time of a system.”

Correira et al., 1987

“Resilience is the ability of an individual or organisation to expeditiously design and implement positive adaptive behaviours matched to the immediate situation, while enduring minimal stress.”

Mallak, 1998

“the capacity to adapt existing resources and skills to new situations and operating conditions.”

Comfort 1999, p. 21

“Resilience is the flip side of vulnerability―a resilient system or population is not sensitive to climate variability and change and has the capacity to adapt.”

IPCC, 2001

“Resiliency is thought of as a characteristic of systems that offers flexibility and scope for adaptation whilst maintaining certain core functions (for example, access to basic needs and social stability).”

Pelling, 2003

“The term implies both the ability to adjust to normal or anticipated levels of stress and to adapt to sudden shocks and extraordinary demands.”

Bruneau et al., 2003

“The capacity of a system to absorb disturbance and reorganize while undergoing change so as to still retain essentially the same function, structure and feedbacks, and therefore identity, that is, the capacity to change in order to maintain the same identity.”

Folke et al., 2010