Ahmed, S.F. 2008. An Examination of the Development Path Taken by Small Island Developing States: Jamaica a Case Study. Masters thesis from the Island Studies Programme, Faculty of Arts, The University of Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada, full text (779 kB in PDF).
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are threatened by myriad of economic, environmental, and social issues, most of which are structural in nature and beyond the control of SIDS. To date, SIDS have collectively and unanimously endorsed only one policy document that comprehensively addresses these issues, and outlines a strategy that seeks to mitigate the vulnerabilities facing islands. This document is the 1994 United Nations Programme of Action on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States (BPOA). However, close to a decade and a half after the implementation of the BPOA, SIDS continue to be extremely vulnerable to the issues identified in the blueprint for development; indicating that even though SIDS policy makers are acutely aware of the vulnerabilities and long-term threats facing their islands, there exists an inconsistency between the goals outlined in the development plans SIDS governments have collectively negotiated, drafted, and implemented; and the outcomes SIDS are collectively experiencing. In order to investigate this issue, this paper seeks to elucidate the ideological inconsistencies in the development process SIDS have embarked upon. By undertaking an analysis of the BPOA, it is shown that the concept of sustainable development has been conceived primarily through the lens of economic growth as a means to improve the quality of life for island peoples. To this end, we place particular emphasis on Jamaica's path towards development and document the islands ecological-history, as well as follow the major trends in Jamaica's economy, environment, and society since the islands independence, but particularly since the adoption of the BPOA. The central thesis of this paper is that SIDS are trapped into perpetuating a mode of development that is increasing their economic, environmental, and social vulnerabilities.
Berke, P., T. Beatley, and C. Feagin. 1991. Hurricane Gilbert Strikes Jamaica: Institutional Design Implications for Recovery and Development.. Hazard Reduction and Recovery Center, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, U.S.A., full text (1,963 kb in PDF).
Berke, P., T. Beatley, and C. Feagin. 1991. Household Recovery Following Hurricane Gilbert: St. James and St. Thomas Parishes, Jamaica.. Hazard Reduction and Recovery Center, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, U.S.A., full text (2,347 kb in PDF).
Blackburn, S. 2011. Governance of decentralised disaster management in Jamaica: Processes of empowerment and power-sharing across scales. Masters thesis from an MSc degree in Disasters, Adaptation & Development at King's College London, London, U.K., full text (1.9 MB in PDF).
This research presents a case study of decentralised disaster risk governance in Portland, Jamaica. A 'zoning in' approach to understanding power relations was adopted, interviewing individuals in national government, local government and local communities. The innovative approach to processes across scales draws on contemporary literature on the politics of scale. This study indicates scalar processes of scale-jumping, partial participation and weak accountability explain the existence and reinforcement of power asymmetries between actors, rooted in the socio-political context. It argues attention to processes and agendas at all scales is necessary to fully understand the construction of realities at a single scale.
Lewis, J. 1995. Project Identification and Equitable Development Planning for Vulnerability Reduction in Areas Affected by Natural Disasters and/or Civil Strife: Jamaica, Hurricane / Flooding / Earthquake, Environment and Community Development (Proposal), full text (1,734 kb in PDF).
Maharaj, R.R. 2010. Acceptable Risk in Caribbean Terrace and Port Royal, Jamaica. A Research Paper Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Natural Resource Management, Disaster Management, Centre for Environmental Management, University of the West Indies, Mona, Kingston, Jamaica, full text (3.0 MB in PDF).
Caribbean Terrace and Port Royal are high risk coastal communities, located on south east of Kingston on the south coast of Jamaica. Despite susceptibility to atmospheric and seismic hazards, permanent settlements continue to occupy both areas, as the upper middle class residents of Caribbean Terrace as well as the low income inhabitants of Port Royal, display a reluctance to leave. This risk acceptance is motivated by social, economic, and environmental factors, acting as both constraints and benefits to create strong ties to the community. The impact of these factors on risk acceptance varied in each community resulting in differing levels of acceptable risk. In order to assess the extent of acceptable risk in each community, an instrument was developed, comprising of a three part tool for data collection, an assortment of risk tables to calculate risk acceptance scores and a scale to compare and rank each score. This scale divided acceptable risk into two categories, voluntary and forced, using a ten point system to reflect intensity of risk acceptance. The assessment of both communities showed results on separate ends of the spectrum, as the community of Caribbean Terrace showed high levels of forced acceptable risk while in Port Royal analysis of the data showed that risk acceptance was primarily mostly voluntary.
Østensvig, I. 2006. Interagency cooperation in disaster management: partnership, information and communications technology and committed individuals in Jamaica. Masters thesis at the Norwegian University Of Life Sciences, Ås, Norway, full text (3.0 MB in PDF).
Jamaica, with its location in the Caribbean, yearly experiences hurricanes and flooding. Hurricane Ivan happened in 2004. This study examines the partnership and interagency cooperation in the disaster management system in Jamaica during Hurricane Ivan. The use of information and communications technology in this system was also studied. Semi-structured key informant interviews were conducted of the involved agencies of the disaster management structures. A questionnaire with structured and open-ended questions was used to collect data at household level. This thesis describes the existing disaster management system in Jamaica, and the involvement of the international community. There is a national and parish level structure, with cooperation among key agencies in the varied specialised area. Popular trust in the system and the ability to prepare for action play important roles in the success of the disaster management. The time aspect and information sharing are key elements to the efficiency of operations. To some extent information and communications technology is used within the system for this purpose. This paper focuses on Red Cross' involvement at international, national and parish levels as well as examples of their partnership with private sector and community-based disaster response. This paper concludes that committed individuals within the system are needed to make the disaster management structure successful. There is also a need for training to improve the interagency cooperation and to utilise the available information and communications technologies. The experience from Jamaica shows that preparedness at community level can benefit the communities more than the disaster management system as such. Their success in community disaster preparedness, strengthen community and national self-esteem.
Overlooking Port Maria and the north coast of Jamaica, taken from Firefly Hill.
(Copyright Ina Østensvig 2003)