Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Planning for Coastal Resilience: The Intersection of Theory and Practice
by Griffith, Adam D., Ph.D., The University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 2018, 79; 10978695
Abstract (Summary)

In the face of accelerating sea-level rise, people continue to live near and develop the coast. In the United States, we have chosen adaptation and protection, via coastal defenses, over retreat from the coast despite the unsustainable nature of efforts to rebuild our towns after storms. Coastal resilience has emerged as the dominant post-disaster narrative and has reinvigorated efforts to help our coasts recover from storms, but the application of theory-based principles of coastal resilience remains unclear. Here, I show that coastal resilience plans incorporate theory-based elements of coastal resilience significantly more than beach management plans. I reviewed over 3,000 pages in 22 planning documents and recorded use of 27 management techniques in five categories associated with coastal resilience. A Mann-Whiney U test found that resilience plans (n = 10) contained significantly more (p < 0.05) techniques than beach management plans (n = 12) overall, but none of the differences in plan scores was significant when examined by category of technique. This research uncovers inadequacies of the current level of adaptation for sea-level rise, challenges the current process of coastal land use planning, and suggests improvements municipalities can implement to maximize impacts of coastal resilience planning such as developing holistic, diverse plans that include socioeconomic resilience and collaboration between practitioners and theorists.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Xiang, Wei-Ning
Commitee: Boyer, Robert, Campbell, Harrison, Exum, Lyn
School: The University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Department: Geography & Urban Regional Analysis
School Location: United States -- North Carolina
Source: DAI-A 80/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Geography, Geomorphology, Sociology
Keywords: Coast, Coastal resilience, Hurricane, Planning, Resilience, Urban planning
Publication Number: 10978695
ISBN: 978-0-438-69268-8
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