Public Response to Disaster Response: Applying the “5C+A” Framework to El Salvador 2001 and Peru 2007

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A recent paper in this journal proposed that post-impact public evaluations of governmental disaster performance may be usefully understood and analyzed along six “5C+A” dimensions: capability, competence, compassion, correctness, credibility, and anticipation. Using post-disaster public opinion data from El Salvador in 2001 and Peru in 2007, we offer the first empirical tests of this 5C+A approach, finding that it cannot be disconfirmed at this point and that public perceptions of the five “Cs” (capabilities, competence, compassion, correctness, and credibility) are clearly related to the public's overall estimations of governmental disaster response and evaluations of presidential disaster performance in some settings. Interestingly, the proposed “A” dimension (anticipation) drops out for both governments and leaders. The implications are serious for both researchers and practitioners interested in the rapidly evolving study of “the politics of disaster.”



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