Disasters differ markedly in their speed and pattern of manifestation, which in turn greatly affects how researchers as well as authorities interpret and respond to them. While theoretical innovations made by disaster researchers over the last century have almost exclusively been developed for the study of large rapid-onset disasters, disaster assessments reveal that elusive and slow-onset disasters affect more people on aggregate. I recently carried out a preliminary study suggesting that slow-onset disasters have primarily been addressed as something ‘other’ than conventional disasters, and have fallen outside of the scope of most disaster studies. We therefore lack theoretical frameworks capable of describing the policy dynamics of slow-onset disasters, largely because existing studies focus on individual slow-onset hazards (e.g. climate change, pandemics or droughts).
In this project, I will address this gap by studying the ways in which two types of slow-onset disasters vary through a political response and health policy lens. By contrasting the political response trajectories of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and Ebola I will investigate how incremental slow-onset disasters (such as AMR) differ from cyclical ones (such as Ebola) with implications for policy response. The project will be hosted at Roskilde University (RUC), Denmark.
Empirically, the project employs a health sector focus where the global- and EU-level political response to AMR is juxtaposed with the Ebola response using process tracing analysis. This provides both novel insight on how an incremental slow-onset disaster (AMR) differs from a cyclical one (Ebola), as well as new knowledge on the dynamics of AMR and pandemic policymaking. The overarching puzzle and ambition of the action is therefore to understand how different slow-onset disasters vary and which implications this variation has for precautionary planning and policy.
MSCA-TOPP-UT-Toppfinansiering av MSCA utgående kandidater