Learning from a Post-Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda Recovery Institution (OPARR): A New Research Agenda for Recovery Governance
Kanako Iuchi*,, Yasuhito Jibiki**, and Beth Tamayose***
*International Research Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS), Tohoku University
468-1 Aza-Aoba, Aramaki, Aoba, Sendai, Miyagi 980-8572, Japan
**Next Generation Volcano Researcher Development Program, Tohoku University, Miyagi, Japan
***School of Public Policy, University of California, Riverside, California, USA
In the phase after disasters, particularly those of an unprecedented magnitude, governance structures often emerge specifically oriented toward rebuilding, with a post-disaster institution at its center to head the reconstruction process. However, little is understood about such institutions’ actual operation, impact on recovery, and role in recovery governance. As post-disaster institutions are trending in recovery, it is important to better understand their nature. As a first step to comprehending the role of these institutions, this study explores a framework for evaluating their success and unpacking the implications of managing recovery in a compressed timeframe. Methods included literature and ethnographic analysis using first-hand knowledge accumulated through longitudinal in-person interviews. The case institution is the Office of the Presidential Assistance on Reconstruction and Recovery (OPARR), established after the 2013 typhoon Haiyan (local name Yolanda) in the national government of the Philippines. Two major findings are reported: First, seven themes – “establishment,” “funding,” “coordination,” “politics,” “leadership,” “achievement,” and “post-disestablishment” – are identified as useful to assess post-disaster institutions. Second, concepts of permanency versus impermanency of institutions after disasters and bottom-up participatory versus top-down structured processes are identified as key implications of operating recovery under time compression, and as areas for further research. The proposed framework provides a basis to better understand and ultimately improve these institutions’ operation and will ideally further efforts to research cross-comparisons in various locations. The study results also suggest a first step in increasing knowledge toward more effective institutions and refining methodological approaches to better examine institutional operation and recovery governance.
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