Protecting Communities, Protecting Livelihoods: Integrating Flood Risk Management and Economic Development in the North West of England, United Kingdom

UoM administered thesis: Phd

  • Authors:
  • Evelyn Prosser

Abstract

Flooding is a natural phenomenon which has been defined simply by Arnell (2002, p. 112) as an excess of water in a place that is normally dry. This excess of water beyond its usual confinement causes problematic consequences to the ordinary functioning activity of society. Although water is an essential resource which sustains life, enables trade for goods and services, is functional, workable and an aesthetically pleasing asset, its presence in excess and subsequent management can threaten economic development. The flood event itself and indeed the policy approaches taken to manage the probability and consequences of flood events can come into conflict with economic development policy. Flood risk management policy has developed a reputation for creating a barrier to economic development, rather than being a tool to facilitator. Despite policy integration rising as an academic concept and a practical policy aspiration; there has been limited research which has examined the interface of flood risk management and economic development in correlation to changes in governance. This thesis explores the challenges that arise at the interface between flood risk management policy and economic development policy using a case study of the Mersey Basin with a specific focus on the city region of Greater Manchester. The research builds an understanding of this interface and the perceptions of actors across multiple scales of governance. The main challenges for policy integration include conflicts which arise between the political and economic interests of actors; the ability of actors to rebalance from the dominance of economic development policy and to articulate the drivers for policy integration; the capability and power of actors to be able to influence strategies for the long term and; the limited availability of people and financial resource to facilitate policy integration. Despite challenges being far reaching across scales of governance, the opportunities for policy integration were seen to exist especially in relation to policy integration being a facilitator to the release of funding and having a role in engaging and fulfilling goals within a wider policy discourse.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Supervisors/Advisors
Award date31 Dec 2018