Living with Water: personal storytelling as intervention in flood communities

Wilson, Mike, McEwen, Lindsey and Fyfe, Hamish (2010) Living with Water: personal storytelling as intervention in flood communities. In: Dealing with Disasters 2010, 23 - 24 November 2010, University of Northumbria, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.

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Abstract / Summary

At Dealing with Disasters 2009, we first presented a paper (Fyfe, Richardson and Wilson) that speculated on the potential uses of personal stories, mediated through digital technology within the arena of disaster management.

This paper was based on a pilot research project with a small number of individuals from Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, who had suffered flooding in recent years. The 'digital stories' that were produced as a result of a series of workshops, consisted of short, first-person narratives, told in the voice of the actual storyteller and accompanied by a slide-show of photographs, often from the individuals own collections.

The paper tentatively proposed that digital storytelling could be used as a tool for increasing the effectiveness, quality and level of communication between post- and pre-disaster communities and between the emergency services and relief organisations, with a view to aiding regeneration and building resilience and preparedness.

This pilot project was conducted by The George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling with the support of Professor Lindsey McEwen at the University of Gloucestershire. Since November 2009, this partnership has developed into a more substantial collaboration and the two universities are now embarked on two cross-disciplinary follow-up research projects:

- a JISC-funded Community Engagement project (Co-Fast – Community Flood Archive Enhancement through storytelling) to explore the value of including digital stories in a local flood database for Severn communities; and

- an AHRC-funded network on exploring flood histories entitled Learning to Live with Water: Flood Histories, Environmental Change, Remembrance and Resilience.

This paper will report on these two projects, building upon the suppositions made in the earlier paper and evaluating progress on developing a narrative-based approach to disaster management, with suggestions for further progressing this agenda.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: ?? 900 ??
Depositing User: Mike Wilson
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2014 09:26
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2017 16:04


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