the gender and disaster sourcebook

a resource of GDN

Sourcebook Home > About the Authors

Many people contributed time and energy to this project but the writers below took primary responsibility in their region. Your comments and feedback to them are always welcome.

Cheryl L. Anderson

Hazards, Climate and Environment Program
University of Hawai’i Social Science Research Institute

Dr. Cheryl L. Anderson is a certified planner (AICP), and the Director of the Hazards, Climate, and Environment Program, University of Hawai‘i Social Science Research Institute. For the last thirteen years, she has conducted research and planning projects in the areas of climate variability and change, hazard mitigation, hazard risk and vulnerability assessments, coral reef protection, ocean resource management, and watershed management in the Pacific Islands region and in Southeast Asia with collaborative partners in regional, federal, state, and local agencies and organizations. These projects include: the State of Hawaii Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan, the County of Kauai Multi-Hazard Mitigation Strategy, the American Samoa Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan, and a Drought Impact Assessment of the 1997-1998 ENSO in the US-affiliated Pacific Islands. She is currently working with the Pacific ENSO Applications Center (PEAC) and the Pacific Regional Integrated Science and Assessment (RISA) program in the area of climate risk management. In August 2004, she co-convened the international Gender Equality and Disaster Risk Reduction Workshop in Honolulu, presented the outcomes at the United Nations World Conference on Disaster Reduction (WCDR) in Kobe, Japan in January 2005, and has conducted training in Geneva on gender and disaster risk reduction for the UN Bureau of Crisis Prevention and Recovery. Dr. Anderson is a member of the Navigators (coordinating council) for the Pacific Risk Management ‘Ohana (PRiMO) and a Steersperson (chairperson) for the Risk Assessment and Post-Disaster Evaluation Hui (working group).

Madhavi Malalgoda Ariyabandu

Project Manager, Tsunami Recovery Team
UNDP Recovery Programme
Colombo 5, Sri Lanka

Madhavi is a development researcher with special interest on political economy of development and disasters. She has designed and coordinated a number of research and training initiatives on risk reduction and gender issues in disaster; and has analysed disaster management policies with special reference to South Asia. She has considerable experience in interacting with the communities living with disasters in South Asia, based on which she has written a number of articles and papers focusing on gender issues. Madhavi authored the book ‘Defeating Disasters: Ideas for Action”, and co-authored the publications ‘Seeing Disasters Differently-Visions and Suggestions’, ‘Disaster Communication, A Resource Kit for Media’, ‘Disaster Risk Reduction in South Asia’, Gender Dimensions in Disaster Management; A Guide for South Asia, Livelihood Centred Approach to Disaster Management, a Policy Framework for South Asia. Currently, Madhavi is Project Manager with the Tsunami Recovery team at UNDP Sri Lanka.

Sarah Bradshaw

ICD and Puntos de Encuentro, Nicaragua
Middlesex University, UK

Dr. Sarah Bradshaw has a PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science and an MA in Latin American Studies from the University of Liverpool. She is Senior Lecturer in Development Studies in the School of Social Sciences at Middlesex University, UK. She complements her academic activities with practical development work, supported by International Cooperation for Development UK (ICD-CIIR). She has worked in Nicaragua from 1998 to the present, first with the Regional Coordinator for Social and Economic Research (CRIES) and subsequently with the feminist NGO Fundación Puntos de Encuentro and with the Centro de Información y Servicios de Asesoría en Salud (CISAS). In addition she has worked closely with the Civil Coordinator for Emergency and Reconstruction (CCER) in the elaboration of the civil society proposal for the reconstruction and transformation of Nicaragua post-hurricane Mitch, as a member of the commission responsible for the Social Audit, and in the analysis and critique of the current World Bank/IMF Poverty Reduction Strategy process. Three papers forwarded for inclusion on the workshop webpage: Social Roles and Spatial Relations of NGOs and Civil Society: Participation and Effectiveness in Central America Post Hurricane Mitch; Reconstructing Roles and Relations: A Gendered Analysis of Women’s Participation in Reconstruction in post-Mitch Nicaragua; Exploring the Gender Dimensions of Reconstruction Processes post-hurricane Mitch.

Elaine Enarson

Brandon University, ADES
Brandon, Manitoba Canada
E-mail: or

Dr. Elaine Enarson teaches in the Applied Disaster and Emergency Studies Program at Brandon University, Manitoba. She is the author of Woods-Working Women: Sexual Integration in the U.S. Forest Service and co-editor of the international reader The Gendered Terrain of Disaster: Through Women’s Eyes. Her publications have addressed the impacts of hurricane Andrew on women in Florida, US and Canadian domestic violence work in disasters, women’s paid and unpaid labor in disasters, gender patterns in flood evacuation, women’s human rights in disasters, the impacts of drought and earthquake on rural women in Gujarat, grassroots women’s vulnerability research, and patterns in the international gender and disaster literature. Elaine is a founding member of the Gender and Disaster Network.

Maureen Fordham

Division of Environmental Management
Northumbria University, Lipman Building
Newcastle upon Tyne

Maureen has been researching and teaching disasters for over 15 years. Her particular interests have focused on marginalized groups of varying kinds, women being a major focus. More recently she has been concerned with issues of masculinity and with the needs and capacities of children and people with varying kinds of disabilities.She is committed to the free exchange of knowledge and information and to that end has set up and managed a number of disaster-related websites , the Gender and Disaster Network ( and Radix ( being just two of them. Much of her time is spent teaching on the MSc in Disaster Management and Sustainable Development at Northumbria University but she often gets invited to act as advisor or participant in various parts of the UN system and other national, regional and local governmental and non-governmental organizations.

Rowena Hay

Cape Town, South Africa

Originally trained in hydrology Rowena Hay has a keen interest in the science-society interface and the roles of women in both. In 1992, she established the South African-based earth science consultancy Umvoto where she continues as the managing director and researcher. Now including six full-time professionals and a number of student interns and support staff, Umvoto focuses on people-centered hydrogeology, rural and urban water supply and management, risk analysis and geoinformatics with a strong emphasis as well on mentoring, training and innovation. Rowena Hay sits on the African Advisory Group that serves to support the implementation of the African Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction while also pursuing doctoral studies.

Stuart Katwikirize

C-SAFE Lesotho, Country Coordinator
Email: stuart_katwikirize@wvi.ogr

Stuart Katwikirize participated in the development of the Sourcebook in its early stages. His humanitarian experience includes working with genocide survivors from Rwanda, Congolese refugees and working with famine stricken communities in both Ethiopia and Southern Africa. For his MSc in Disaster Management, Katwikirize wrote a thesis on gender and resettlement, and continues to be passionate about gender sensitive programming during complex emergency responses. Paper forwarded for inclusion on the workshop webpage: “Understanding Resettlement Capacities and Vulnerabilities of Displaced Male and Female Headed Households: A Case of Three Camps in Northern Uganda.” Currently, he works with World Vision International in Lesotho as the Country Coordinator.

Nuray Karanci

Middle East Technical University, Ankara Turkey
Psychology Department

A. Nuray Karanci is a professor of clinical psychology at the psychology department of the Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey. She has been working there since 1980. After graduating from the Psychology Department of METU in 1973, she went to the United Kingdom and completed her M.S in Clinical Psychology in 1976, and her Ph.D in 1980. Her research interests center around clinical psychology, attributions of psychiatric patients and their relationships with emotional reactions, families of schizophrenic patients, burdens and expressed emotion and development of self-efficacy. Since 1993, she has been extensively involved in research on psychological consequences of earthquakes, disaster management and facilitating community participation in disaster management and preparing disaster preparedness guidelines and training of trainees programs. She has also worked with earthquake survivors as a clinical psychologist and provided individual psychological services and group debriefing programs. She is one of the founding members of, METU, Disaster Research and Implementation Center and has been involved in applied and basic research in disasters. She is a member of the Turkish National Earthquake Council and Member Vice Chair of the International Natural Hazards Society. She has got numerous international and national publications related to her research interests. Three papers forwarded for inclusion on the workshop webpage: Observations on the Social and Psychological Aspects of the 1 May 2003 Bingöl Earthquake (Karanic et al.); Psychological Distress And Growth Among The Survivors Of The 1999 Marmara Earthquake (power point slides); Karanci et al. 1999, Gender differences in psychological distress, coping, social support and related variables following the 1995 Dinar (Turkey) earthquake.

Lourdes Meyreles

Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales [FLACSO]
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Lourdes Meyreles is a sociologist with a Masters Degree in Gender and Development Studies. Currently she is the Coordinator of the Social Studies of Disaster Project at Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales FLACSO, Dominican Republic Program. This is a research and education project which during the past 6 years has been involved in various regional research activities and local community educational activities. Research has been basically in the areas of environmental degradation and risk construction in the Greater Caribbean Region, women’s vulnerability to disasters in the Caribbean and other research activities regarding disasters in the Dominican Republic.

Mary Hope Schwoebel

4183 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030

Mary Hope Schwoebel is an independent consultant and scholar with over 20 years experience in the fields of development, humanitarian assistance, and peacebuilding. She has lived and worked in Africa and South America for 12 years, and has done consulting in Africa, South America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, and South Asia. Ms. Schwoebel has a Masters degree in international development from the University of California, Davis, a BS in anthropology and sociology, and is a Doctoral Candidate in peace and conflict studies, at the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (ICAR), George Mason University. She has worked for UN agencies, USAID, NGOs, and research institutions. She has taught as Adjunct Faculty at Georgetown University, American University, and George Mason University. Ms. Schwoebel first became interested in gender and disaster while carrying out relief operations in Somalia in 1992. Most recently, in 2004, she worked with USAID to assist the Indian government in its efforts to mainstream gender into its nation-wide disaster management strategy. She has published a number of articles relating gender and disaster, gender and development, and gender and peacebuilding, including Unsung Heroines: Women and Natural Disasters a publication of USAID's Office of Women in Development.