- In Haiti, a new path to urban renewal – Washington Post
A feature article slideshow appearing in the Washington Post highlights the reconstruction of Port-au-Prince’s Ravine Pintade neighborhood following the 2010 earthquake as an example of Haitian-led revitalization.
The “Katye” project is being credited for repairing or rebuilding homes for half of the community’s 900 residents through a $8.5 million grant by U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The project, however, is not deemed an overwhelming success or a model for reconstruction. For instance, only enough money was available to stabilize one side of the neighborhood’s ravine.
An Associated Press article published in July criticized the U.S. efforts to help rebuild Haiti as slow, insufficient and lacking transparency. A Freedom of Information Act request found that only 12 percent of allotted funds had gone towards infrastructure, energy and shelter after the earthquake. Additionally, half of the promised $1.8 billion towards relief aid was unspent due to staffing issues at the Port-au-Prince embassy and the inefficiency of the Haitian government.
- Failing to learn from hurricane experience, again and again – Wall Street Journal
A forthcoming study in the Journal of Risk and Uncertainty has found that people consistently misread past hurricane experience in predicting future hurricane risk.
A video-game-style simulation allowed subjects to protect their coastal property as a hurricane approached, but people consistently under-protected the home and suffered losses three times than what they would have “if they had bought protection rationally.” The study found the largest factor was prior hurricane experience, which the subjects had consistently underappreciated.
The study was done, in part, to analyze why flood policies soared post-Hurricane Katrina, but fell down to pre-Katrina levels only a few years later.
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