Macquarie University
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A critical exploration of existing laws, policies and practices pertaining to gender vulnerability, gender mainstreaming and disaster management: a case study of Bangladesh

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posted on 2022-03-28, 14:21 authored by Nadira Sultana
It has been recognized that the existing laws, policies and program of disaster risk reduction have failed to address adequately the differential impact of natural disasters on women. This research has explored the extent to which the vulnerabilities of women are addressed in the existing disaster risk reduction approach in Bangladesh. In doing so, it divides women's experiences in natural disasters into five broad categories and identifies how far these are reflected in the existing disaster-related regulatory framework in Bangladesh and international treaties, which influence the Government's interventions. Five broad categories (biological, economic, socio-cultural, political and organisational) were used to identify the most frequently mentioned causes of vulnerabilities. To develop a more practical approach, the biological dimension of women's vulnerability requires focusing more on increasing the self-consciousness of women, while the economic dimension of women's vulnerability is influenced by lack of access to economic resources, particularly access to the public domain and marketplaces. Ameliorating the political dimension of vulnerability requires focus on capacity building for women as decision makers and leaders at the household, community and national levels. Additionally, the socio-cultural dimension of vulnerability highlighted that the existing disaster management approach should stress changing the attitudes of the community to develop a more women-friendly environment. Finally, the organisational dimension of vulnerability involves developing a more gender-sensitive approach and the successful implementation of the existing gender-sensitive approach to disaster risk reduction. This thesis argues that understanding these dimensions is useful in reducing disaster impacts on women and ensuring gender equality. As these dimensions of vulnerabilities are based on pre-existing variables, which may vary from society to society and culture to culture, it is significant to understand these dimensions to choose better policy options. Moreover, these pre-existing variables are so ingrained and widespread that improving women's situation demands a deeper understanding and a multi-dimensional approach based on the multi-disciplines and multi-stakeholders involved -- abstract.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction -- Chapter 2: Theoretical framework -- Chapter 3: Dimensions and causes of women's vulnerability in cyclones - participants' concerns -- Chapter 4: Women's vulnerability and disaster laws, orders, policies and programs in Bangladesh -- Chapter 5: International initiatives and women's vulnerability in disasters -- Chapter 6: Best practice, findings and recommendations -- Chapter 7: Conclusion -- References -- Appendices.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 206-225

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


PhD, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Macquarie Law School

Department, Centre or School

Macquarie Law School

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Vijaya Nagarajan

Additional Supervisor 1

Shawkat Alam


Copyright Nadira Sultana 2019. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (xvi, 324 pages)

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