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Evaluations of post-disaster recovery: A review of practice material

5 December 2016




This paper reviews evaluations of post-disaster recovery efforts. The focus is on operational material and other ‘grey literature’ from disasters that have occurred in Australia, New Zealand and internationally. We develop a typology that categorises disaster events and includes whether evaluations were undertaken; the methods used; and whether the evaluations focused on the processes or outcomes of the recovery program. The review finds a lack of evaluation of post-disaster recovery. Where evaluations have been conducted, they are mostly process- rather than outcomes-based. There is a need for guidance for post-disaster recovery programs to support evaluation practice to determine the effectiveness, efficiency and appropriateness of post-disaster recovery interventions. There is significant investment in post-disaster recovery programs, with little known of their effectiveness. This review identifies useful case studies and methods to evaluate post-disaster recovery efforts, and informs the development of a national post-disaster evaluation framework.

A systematic evidence review published by ANZSOG’s open access peer-reviewed journal Evidence Base.

Suggested citation

Ryan, R., Wortley, L., & Ní Shé, E. (2016). Evaluations of post-disaster recovery: A review of practice material. Evidence Base, 2016(4): 1-33.

Authors: Roberta Ryan, Liana Wortley and Éidín Ní Shé
Published Date: 5 December 2016