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Disasters. 2005 Dec;29(4):370-85.

Evidence against disaster-induced migration: the 2004 tornado in north-central Bangladesh.

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Department of Geography, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506, USA.


Migration is generally considered to be one of the primary responses to a natural disaster. The existing literature widely acknowledges the fact that disaster victims migrate from affected areas. This paper, though, provides empirical evidence of the non-occurrence of out-migration in the aftermath of the 14 April 2004 tornado in Bangladesh. Data collected from 291 respondents from eight tornado-affected villages suggest that no one from these locations migrated to other areas. The constant flow of disaster aid and its proper distribution by the government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) were the main reasons why victims did not leave. This study contributes to the disaster literature by providing three important findings: disasters do not always create out-migration; emergency aid can compensate in monetary terms for damage caused by disasters; and some of the arguments made in the literature against the provision of emergency relief for disaster victims are not always valid for all countries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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