An institutional review of disaster management and its implications into economic inequality in Japan and Nepal
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Economic inequality, the disparity between poor and rich, is a pressing case in the world. Japan and Nepal are two examples of where inequality is present, with both a current Gini index of 0.52 and 0.51 respectively; these are two contrasting countries regarding their economies, yet with similarities as well. One of the similarities that the countries share is that each case is highly prone to natural disasters, of which large disasters have had great economic effects on both cases. As countries that are prone to disasters, appropriate disaster management is necessary to ensure that risks are decreased and that citizens are safeguarded. Disaster management in these two cases is managed by institutions; with both bottom up and top down designs. The thesis aims to develop a connection between institutions that manage natural disasters, and the role of this management in the fluctuation of economic inequality. To assess this connection, the dominance of bottom up and top down designs is reviewed in connection to collective action efforts. Additionally a selection of Ostrom’s design principles on common pool resources is applied, revealing that top down dominant collective action measures are the most effective in disaster management, but do not always directly influence economic inequality. Bottom up institutions can be fairly effective in disaster management, but lack power to influence economic inequality drastically. Further research can develop more distinct links between economic inequality and governmental response in particular.