Disasters and Governments

Morris Davis, Steven Thomas Seitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines why disasters of similar types differentially affect countries throughout the world. Despite a plethora of studies in the disaster field, such a theme has hitherto not been systematically pursued. Concepts of government effectiveness, government instability, available resources, and social context are incorporated into a structural model that seeks to explain differentials in impact. A derivative measurement model is tested using a merged data archive based on the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA)'s Disaster History Update Program and Banks' Cross-National Time Series. The model holds well for five disaster categories (accident, volcano, earthquake, drought, epidemic), modestly for two more (storm and flood), and fails to explain differences only for landslide and fire.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)547-568
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Conflict Resolution
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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