Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Specific challenge:

Culture is the characteristics of a particular group of people, defined by everything from a set of values, history, literature, language, religion to cuisine, social habits or music and arts. Preparedness, response to disasters and after-crisis recovery is always influenced by cultural background of individuals and the society they live in. 

To this end, cultural factors play also an important role in determining the way people respond to stress, engage in the crisis management and accept disaster relief in an emergency situation. At the same time lack of cultural understanding, sensitivity and competencies can hamper and even harm the professional response to disaster as it is crucial to understand the cultural background of disaster victims.



Proposals in this field may focus on the following issues:

  • Which cultural factors, important insights, specific communication styles for a given cultural group should be taken into consideration during disaster situations in urban areas?

  • How to anticipate and identify solutions to cultural problems that may arise in the event of an emergency?

Proposers are encouraged to analyse how emotional, psychological and social needs, as well as communal strengths and coping skills that arise in disasters can affect the way certain urban communities prepare, respond, engage in restauration and recover from disaster. The gender dimension needs to be fully taken into account.

The proposal should aim at providing an analysis of existing links between disaster and culture, in particular in urban areas taking into account past and on-going EU research.


Expected impact:


-          increased effectiveness of those who respond to disasters;

-          a more resilient society by ensuring that cities are better prepared for and able to recover from emergencies.

-          better meeting the needs of various cultures during disaster relief, thus improving reaction time and reducing fatalities;in order to provide disaster relief.

-          providing a framework for improving disasters' policies and practices by taking into consideration every disaster victim's cultural and personal uniqueness.

The action is expected to proactively target the needs and requirements of users, such as citizens, first responders, urban communities and local security agencies.

Type of action: Coordination and Support Actions



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