HUANG Jianyi, SU Fei, ZHANG Pingyu. Measuring Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China[J]. Chinese Geographical Science, 2015, 25(4): 472-485. doi: 10.1007/s11769-015-0769-7
Citation: HUANG Jianyi, SU Fei, ZHANG Pingyu. Measuring Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China[J]. Chinese Geographical Science, 2015, 25(4): 472-485. doi: 10.1007/s11769-015-0769-7

Measuring Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China

doi: 10.1007/s11769-015-0769-7
Funds:  Under the auspices of National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41401176, 41201550, 41201114), New Starting Point of Beijing Union University (No. ZK10201406, ZK10201302), Humanities and Social Science Key Research Base of Zhejiang Province (Applied Economics at Zhejiang Gongshang University) (No. JYTyyjj20130105), Incubation Programme of Great Wall Scholars of Beijing Municipal University & College (No. IDHT20130322)
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  • Corresponding author: SU Fei. E-mail: suf910@163.com
  • Received Date: 2014-09-26
  • Rev Recd Date: 2015-01-08
  • Publish Date: 2015-04-27
  • Social vulnerability in this study represents the differences between the capacity to cope with natural hazards and disaster losses suffered within and between places. The assessment of social vulnerability has been recognized as a critical step in understanding natural hazard risks and enhancing effective response capabilities. This article presents an initial study of the social vulnerability of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (B-T-H) Region in China. The goal is to replicate and test the applicability of the United States Social Vulnerability Index (SoVI) method in a Chinese cultural context. Thirty-nine variables adapted from the SoVI were collected in relation to two aspects: socioeconomic vulnerability and built environment vulnerability. Using factor analysis, seven factors were extracted from the variable set: the structure of social development, the level of economic and government financial strength, social justice and poverty, family structure, the intensity of space development, the status of residential housing and transportation, and building structure. Factor scores were summed to get the final SoVI scores and the most and least vulnerable units were identified and mapped. The highest social vulnerability is concentrated in the northwest of the study area. The least socially vulnerable areas are mainly distributed in the Beijing, Tianjin and Shijiazhuang core urban peripheral and central city areas of the prefecture-level cities. The results show that this method is a useful tool for revealing places that have a high level of vulnerability, in other words, areas which are more likely to face significant challenges in coping with a large-scale event. These findings could provide a scientific basis for policy making and the implementation of disaster prevention and mitigation in China.
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Measuring Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China

doi: 10.1007/s11769-015-0769-7
Funds:  Under the auspices of National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41401176, 41201550, 41201114), New Starting Point of Beijing Union University (No. ZK10201406, ZK10201302), Humanities and Social Science Key Research Base of Zhejiang Province (Applied Economics at Zhejiang Gongshang University) (No. JYTyyjj20130105), Incubation Programme of Great Wall Scholars of Beijing Municipal University & College (No. IDHT20130322)
    Corresponding author: SU Fei. E-mail: suf910@163.com

Abstract: Social vulnerability in this study represents the differences between the capacity to cope with natural hazards and disaster losses suffered within and between places. The assessment of social vulnerability has been recognized as a critical step in understanding natural hazard risks and enhancing effective response capabilities. This article presents an initial study of the social vulnerability of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (B-T-H) Region in China. The goal is to replicate and test the applicability of the United States Social Vulnerability Index (SoVI) method in a Chinese cultural context. Thirty-nine variables adapted from the SoVI were collected in relation to two aspects: socioeconomic vulnerability and built environment vulnerability. Using factor analysis, seven factors were extracted from the variable set: the structure of social development, the level of economic and government financial strength, social justice and poverty, family structure, the intensity of space development, the status of residential housing and transportation, and building structure. Factor scores were summed to get the final SoVI scores and the most and least vulnerable units were identified and mapped. The highest social vulnerability is concentrated in the northwest of the study area. The least socially vulnerable areas are mainly distributed in the Beijing, Tianjin and Shijiazhuang core urban peripheral and central city areas of the prefecture-level cities. The results show that this method is a useful tool for revealing places that have a high level of vulnerability, in other words, areas which are more likely to face significant challenges in coping with a large-scale event. These findings could provide a scientific basis for policy making and the implementation of disaster prevention and mitigation in China.

HUANG Jianyi, SU Fei, ZHANG Pingyu. Measuring Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China[J]. Chinese Geographical Science, 2015, 25(4): 472-485. doi: 10.1007/s11769-015-0769-7
Citation: HUANG Jianyi, SU Fei, ZHANG Pingyu. Measuring Social Vulnerability to Natural Hazards in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, China[J]. Chinese Geographical Science, 2015, 25(4): 472-485. doi: 10.1007/s11769-015-0769-7
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