Evidence reviews that explore community agency and community engagement in four global health emergencies have been published by the Nuffield Council on Bioethics.
The four emergencies considered by the reviews are:
- the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami,
- Hurricane Katrina (2005),
- the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Fukushima nuclear disaster, and
- the Syrian Civil War, which began in 2011.
The new evidence reviews were produced for our project on research in global health emergencies, which was published earlier this year. They provide a rich account of the initiatives, programmes, and schemes organised by affected community members in response to the four emergencies; and those established by charities, NGOs, and government bodies. They look at the benefits of the engagement initiatives, as well as problems that they encountered.
The four emergencies were chosen by the project’s working group to enable it to draw on diverse accounts of community response and engagement initiatives across different ‘types’ of emergency.
The reviews informed the final project report’s conclusions on the importance of facilitating activities so that local voices in emergencies can be heard, and heard meaningfully. They also provide valuable examples when considering how communities might be engaged as part of the response to the current COVID-19 pandemic.
The reviews were all researched and written in-house by Kate Harvey, Senior Research Officer for the global health emergencies project.