Use of indigenous knowledge in strategies for disaster risk reduction for flood disaster: the study of Tharu community of Bardiya district of Nepal
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The main aim of this study was to explore the use of indigenous knowledge and practices in Tharu Community to reduce the impact of flood disasters. Disasters are more frequent and prominent at the present. Nepal is not an exception either. When the disaster strikes, it is poor and marginalized groups that suffer the most. Tharu Community in Nepal is one of the marginalized and vulnerable communities for flood hazards. Hence it is crucial to increase the understanding about the ways which impacts of extreme events can be reduced. To carry our Disaster Risk Reduction approaches, it is first required to understand what community needs. Promotion of new risk reduction options needs to consider local tradition and norms to ensure their acceptability by the local people. In spite of huge investments in the area of disaster management, losses continue to mount. The need to bridge the gap between practice and policy with the recognition of indigenous knowledge and local coping strategies is the must. Hence this paper is an attempt to understand the local practices used by Tharu Community. The research showed that the community people did have knowledge regarding the changing climate and are putting their own efforts in order to cope up. They have their own ways of forecasting and early warning systems. They are using the traditional ways of embankment in order to minimize the adverse effects of flood. However, the indigenous practices which proved to be useful in the past years were not enough to cope with the rapid change in climatic patterns. Need to integrating scientific strategies in these indigenous practices is a must.
DescriptionThis dissertation is submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master in Disaster Management, 2011.
DepartmentDepartment of Architecture, BRAC University
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