Economic Problems During Recovery from the 1995 Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake
National Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (NIED), 3-1 Tennodai, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-0006, Japan
This paper reviews academic work on local economic recovery from the 1995 Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in Kobe, Japan, and notes the implications for disaster management policies in large-scale disasters. The primary conclusion is that the earthquake disaster revealed Kobe’s economic vulnerability. During recovery, the urban economy could not meet reconstruction demands, and had to compete with cities overseas, due to economic globalization. More emphasis should thus be placed on pre disaster measures that enable the local economy to maintain economic activities if disaster strikes and to have a competitive or unique economic structure that enables local economic survival despite temporary interruptions due to disasters.