Resilience to natural hazards: An analysis of territorial governance in the Nordic countries

Lisa van Well, Peter van der Keur, Atte Harjanne, Emmanuel Pagneux, Adriaan Perrels, Hans Jørgen Henriksen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Institutional arrangements at work in the governance of natural hazard risks in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden are reviewed and analyzed against the territorial governance conceptual framework. The review and analysis are based on information gathered through literature, an expert online survey, interviews and a one and a half-day workshop. The Nordic countries share certain governance characteristics, such as a welfare state legacy, promotion of transparency, and the inclination to bottom-up and polycentric governance approaches. In this context, it is no surprise that seemingly the institutional arrangements for natural hazard management are formed along similar lines. However, the hazard landscape is diverse and legislation and acquired governance practices in each country reflect these differences, particularly in the production of knowledge about the hazards. Nordic governance regimes and regulations combine broadly defined responsibilities with detailed requirements and distributed authority across sectors. Yet, a closer look at some of the territorial preconditions reveals some interesting differences that influence DRM and societal resilience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1283-1294
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018


  • Adaptability
  • Coordination
  • Natural hazards
  • Nordic countries
  • Resilience
  • Territorial governance

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 2: Water Resources


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