Risk Awareness and Impediments to Disaster Preparedness of Foreign Residents in the Tokyo Metropolitan Area, Japan

Bismark Adu-Gyamfi, Rajib Shaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The likelihood of a mega-earthquake, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the threat of other disasters in the Tokyo Metropolitan area have necessitated collective responsibilities to take all possible actions to reduce their impacts. The experiences from past disasters have, however, highlighted the plight of foreign residents in coping with disasters and have reinvigorated calls for rigorous counteractions. As the population of foreign residents continues to increase in the metropolis, this research examines their awareness of risks and the obstacles that hinder disaster preparedness in the wake of future disasters. An Extended Parallel Process Model is utilized to analyze both secondary and primary data sources, and the results reveal that 65% perceive the severity of disaster as a threat and believe in a likelihood of occurrence in the city; however, the confidence to undertake some recommended countermeasures are lacking (with low efficacy of 70%). This is causing many to control their fear by not actively seeking further risk information or participating in disaster prevention activities. In consideration of these instances, the study recommends a collective approach built upon the merits of stakeholder engagements to provide vicarious experiences, verbal persuasions, and mastery experiences to boost the response capacities of foreign residents for disaster preparedness. This will be relevant for city authorities to enhance risk communication and foster foreigner–Japanese community integration.

Original languageEnglish
Article number11469
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Volume19
Issue number18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Sep

Keywords

  • disaster preparedness
  • Extended Parallel Process Model
  • foreign residents
  • risk awareness
  • Tokyo Metropolitan area

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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