Community participation, collective efficacy and empowerment are positively linked to earthquake preparedness
An additional confirmation of the importance of social processes in risk perception and mitigation comes from the study of Paton and associates (Paton, Bajek, Okada, & McIvor, 2010 - see source document for full reference). These authors showed that community participation, collective efficacy, and empowerment are positively linked to earthquake preparedness, both in New Zealand and Japan. The investigated places have comparable levels of seismic risk, but differ with respect to cultural characteristics, such as individualism collectivism, uncertainty avoidance, and power distance (Hofstede, 2001, as cited in Paton et al., 2010). These cultural differences seem to affect community participation, collective efficacy, and empowerment, which then influence people's intentions to engage in the protective behaviour. In New Zealand, the perception of personal control over the outcomes of earthquakes (i.e. believing that it is possible for a personal action to be effective) is a significant predictor of the levels of community participation, collective efficacy, and empowerment (Paton et al., 2010). In Japan, in contrast, the very same perception of self-efficacy was not related to neither of these community action variables. As Paton and collaborators argue, this might indicate that in Japan personal independence and individual actions are less important than interrelatedness and collective actions (Paton et al., 2010).
Note: See source document for full reference.
Hazards: Natural hazards