Liberty Pascua

Associate student
Liberty Pascua

The main objective of Liberty Pascua’s research was to unpack the processes involved in the construction and perpetuation of disaster risk reduction knowledge, highlight intersections, overlaps and disjoints, and examine their implications to the learning of disasters. Her research focused on disaster-prone communities, such as those in Vanuatu and the Philippines which are first and third in the list of most vulnerable countries globally to natural hazards – with Port Vila in Vanuatu consistently ranked as the most exposed city in the world to natural hazards.

Liberty’s research looked at the context of education and learning and the construction of knowledge as a political, cultural and social affair. An intimate, in-depth understanding of how learners in their communities use ‘knowledges’ in making sense of disasters is a valuable resource in informing policies on disaster risk reduction education and governance at the local, state, and international levels.

Liberty says her field work has shown her how much knowledge there is in homes, villages and individuals.

"Nobody knows a place and its experiences better than those who have lived in the land," says Liberty. "There is less dependence on external help in these small communities because of developed coping strategies."

Liberty says the customary practices and agricultural techniques are helping the confidence of small communities to better deal with natural hazards. The links between these customary practices and mitigating against natural hazards can have a positive impact on policy adaptation and implementation.

Liberty has been published extensively in academic journals such as the Journal of Geography, the Journal of Environmental Education, Evaluation and Program Planning, and International Research in Geographical and Environmental Education. She also presented a Three Minute Thesis at the CRC’s Research Forum in April 2018. Read her thesis here.

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