Community resilience and flooding in UK guidance: A critical review of concepts, definitions, and their implications

Evangelos Ntontis*, John Drury, Richard Amlôt, Gideon James Rubin, Richard Williams

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Community resilience is one of the main strategies that UK governments employ to deal with the impact of floods. In this paper, we analyse how community resilience is used in 28 UK guidance documents that refer to floods and discuss the benefits and drawbacks of different conceptualizations. We show that some documents represent community resilience as the absence of illness, as the opposite of vulnerability, as a static and unchanging element, or in a circular way as both a cause and an outcome. By contrast, some documents avoid generalizations and focus more specifically on the concept's behavioural, relational, cognitive, and psychological aspects. We discuss the implications of different conceptualizations of community resilience for its operationalization by policymakers and practitioners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2-13
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Contingencies and Crisis Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Evangelos Ntontis is funded by a Public Health England PhD studentship. Dr Rubin and Dr Amlôt are funded by the National Institute for Health Research Health Protection Research Unit (NIHR HPRU) in Emergency Preparedness and Response at King’s College London in partnership with Public Health England (PHE). The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR, the Department of Health or Public Health England.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd


  • community resilience
  • disasters
  • extreme events
  • floods
  • governance
  • policy
  • preparedness
  • resilience


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