Addressing Land Issues in Disaster Risk Management in the Pacific Island Countries

David Mitchell, Helene Jacot des Combes, Matt Myers, Drryn McEvoy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Pacific region is one of the most disaster-prone in the world. Rapid urbanization, conflict over land, and the establishment of informal settlements on hazardous sites further exacerbate the problems. These issues present a significant challenge for government agencies, which require capacity building to respond adequately. Customary land predominates in many Pacific island countries and is central to decisions about land. In this paper we review previous disasters in the Pacific island countries to identify land issues that have emerged, and consider how land tenure and disaster management are administered. We conclude that land and national disaster management office agencies must work together to address land issues in the context of natural disasters and that customary groups should be involved in disaster risk reduction activities and efforts to improve tenure security for all legitimate landholders. Capacity strengthening would benefit all groups involved.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4
JournalLand Tenure Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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