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The role of trust in communication breakdowns in disaster situations

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Thesis type
(Thesis) M.A.
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Disaster situations are, by their very nature, broad and complex situations. While it is intrinsically appealing to assume that communication breakdowns in these situations are due to technological barriers, this assumption overlooks the possibility that non-technological barriers to communication exist within and between agencies and individuals. High levels of social capital within or between groups will enable better communication and resource flows. Thus trust will clearly have a critical role in communication during disaster situations. This thesis describes the disaster communication and seeks to understand the role of trust in the communication process. The literature reviewed here explores the areas of communication breakdowns and interoperability, gathering together diverse literature regarding the role of social networks, habitus, and trust in order to understand better the dynamics of the communication process in disaster situations.
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