Resilience and recovery: Business behaviour following the Canterbury earthquakes

Erica Seville, Joanne Stevenson, John Vargo, Charlotte Brown, S. Giovinazzi

NIST Workshop on the Economics of Community Disaster Resilience, 29-30 April 2015, Washington DC


Within an economy, businesses, governments and community service providers are the actors-on-the-ground that experience the direct and indirect impacts of infrastructure failures. They are the actors whose responses, decisions, and adaptive behaviors collectively shape the path of economic recovery and patterns of growth and decline. This brief report presents key findings from a study conducted with 541 public and private Canterbury regional organizations by Resilient Organizations as part of the Economics of Resilient Infrastructure (ERI) project in New Zealand. The study was conducted in the light of major disruptions in the aftermath of a complex earthquake sequence. The research presented here found how organizations mitigated those disruptions and recovered their productive capacity. Highlighted are the ways in which they adapted to facilitate continued or even improved functioning and discovered the impact of organizations resilience on ability to meet customer demand, productivity and cash-flow.

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