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date: 08 August 2022

Corruption and the Governance of Disaster Risk 

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Natural Hazards Governance
David AlexanderDavid Alexander

This article begins by defining corruption; examining the history and evolution of the term; and providing a contextual frame for it, including an explanation of how it fits in with theories of society and disaster. Next, there is a discussion of what corruption reveals about the relationship between power and disasters, and how the powerful exploit disasters in corrupt ways. This leads to an investigation of how corruption can be seen as an artifact of organized crime, and how criminal organizations take advantage of disaster situations to extend their corrupt influence and profit by adversity. Corruption is thus seen as both an ad hoc phenomenon and a highly organized one, depending on the circumstances. Corruption and poverty are the subject of a further analysis, and one that is extremely important as the two phenomena enjoy a devilish symbiosis. The following section deals with the ways in which corruption affects the supply of humanitarian aid in international disasters, and how in the aftermath of such events, black markets and the “alternative” or “informal” economy are fertile ground for corruption to breed and thrive. Finally, the conclusions to this article draw together the threads and summarize the concept, phenomenon, and manifestation of corruption in relation to the risk and impact of disaster.... ...

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