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The Paths Less Explored: From Mobile Technology Use, Information Seeking and Sharing, to Disaster Preparedness

Sat, June 11, 17:00 to 18:15, Fukuoka Hilton, Grand Foyer

Abstract

Drawing on ecological models of health promotion and human behaviors, this research presents an ecological view to derive a comprehensive understanding about the determinants and processes of disaster preparedness behavior. Data were collected through a survey conducted in Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Myanmar. The findings of this study showed that individuals’ routinized advanced use of mobile technology, along with participation in voluntary associations and communication with the core network, significantly predicted information seeking about impending disasters. Supporting the mobilization hypothesis, rural residents’ use of basic functions of mobile technology helped increase their involvement in information seeking about impending disasters. Individuals’ risk perception and information seeking were significantly directly and indirectly related to preparedness behavior through information sharing. Moreover, the relationships between various predictors -- information seeking, communication with the core network, voluntary participation, and receipt of general social support-- and preparedness behavior were mediated by the receipt of disaster-related tangible social support. Theoretical and practical implications of the findings for risk reduction, community resilience, and digital divides are discussed.

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