Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The challenges of integrating disaster risk management (DRM), integrated water resources management (IWRM) and autonomous strategies in low-income urban areas : a case study of Douala, Cameroon
Author: Roccard, Jessica
ISNI:       0000 0004 5359 7322
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2014
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Climate change affects water resources suitable for human consumption, transforming water quality and quantity. These changes exacerbate vulnerabilities of human society, increasing the importance of adequately protecting and managing water resources and supplies. Growing urban populations provide an additional stress on existing water resources, particularly increasing the vulnerability of people living in poor neighbourhoods. In urban areas, official responses to climate change are currently dominated by Disaster Risk Management (DRM); however, more recently Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) has emerged to support the integration of climate change adaptation in water resource planning. Based on a case study of the city of Douala, Cameroon, the thesis examines the operational implementation of both frameworks, combining observations, semi-structured interviews with different stakeholders and a survey carried out in three poor communities. The research highlights the challenges of improving the joining of both frameworks to adequately reach the urban poor, whilst being alert to, and responsive to, the autonomous adaptation strategies the poor autonomously implement and develop. At present, the IWRM and DRM frameworks are implemented separately and do not clearly reach the urban poor who face three major water-related issues (flooding, water-related diseases and water access). Other institutional water-related measures and projects are carried out by authorities in the low-income communities, but the institutions still struggle to manage the delivery of basic services and protect these communities against hazards. The lack of effective outcomes of the institutional water-related measures and projects has led to a strong process of autonomous adaptation by inhabitants of poor communities. Driven by their adaptive capacity supported by the abundance in groundwater resources, they use coping and adaptive strategies to reduce their vulnerability to water-related issues, such as alternative water suppliers. Similarly, the frequency of the flooding hazard has led the urban poor to develop practices to minimise disaster impacts. However, the autonomous strategies developed face limitations caused by the natural and build environment. In this context, the autonomous strategies of the urban poor and the strategies appear to have a strong influence on each other. While institutional projects have initiated spontaneous strategies, other strategies reduce the willingness of the low-income neighbourhoods to participate in the implementation of official, externally derived development projects.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: urban poor ; DRM ; IWRM ; autonomous adaptation