Economic Shocks: Reducing Vulnerability and Increasing Resilience in the Pacific

Overview

The project focused on vulnerability and resilience at a household level in the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. These countries are renowned for their exposure to economic shocks and natural disasters. The three research questions considered by the research were: which households in the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu are most vulnerable to economic shocks?; what were the impacts of the recent food, fuel and economic shocks on households in the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu?; and how do households in the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu responded to shocks and how effective are these responses? Quantitative and qualitative techniques were used to answer the research questions. In the first year of the project a total of 1,000 households were surveyed in both urban and rural locations in both the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. In order to gain a sense of how lives in the communities are changing, half of the communities were visited again in the third year of the project. A further 660 households were surveyed including 147 households that were surveyed in the first year. Data from the household surveys are complemented with qualitative information from over 70 focus group discussions and semi-structured key informant interviews. Key informant interviews were held with government officials, community leaders, and village chiefs.

Partners

  • Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Oxfam Australia
  • University of the South Pacific
  • Deakin University

Publications

  • Feeny, S. (2014) (ed.), Household Vulnerability and Resilience to Economic Shocks: Findings from Melanesia, Ashgate, UK.
  • Feeny, S. and J. Donahue (2014), Scaling-Up Aid: Modes and Modalities in the Pacific, in Ware, A. (ed.), Development in Difficult Sociopolitical Contexts, Palgrave Macmillan, UK.
  • Feeny, S. (2014), The Scope for Formal Social Protection Schemes Melanesia, in Feeny, S.  (ed.) Household Vulnerability and Resilience: Evidence from Melanesia, Ashgate Publishing, UK.
  • Donahue, J., Eccles, K., Feeny, S., McDonald, L. and A. Posso (2017), Gendered Impacts of Global Economic Shocks: Finds from Household in Melanesia, Pacific Studies, Vol.4, No.3, pp.329-356.
  • Posso, A. and S. Feeny (2016), Beyond Enrolments: The Determinants of Primary School Attendance in Melanesia, Journal of the Asia-Pacific Economy, Vol.21, No.4, pp.531-48.
  • Feeny, S. and L. McDonald (2016), Vulnerability to Multidimensional Poverty: Findings from Households in Melanesia, Journal of Development Studies.Vol.52, No.3, pp.447-464.
  • Feeny, S., McDonald, L. and A. Posso (2014), Are Poor People Less Happy?: Evidence from Melanesia, World Development, Vol.64, pp.449-459.
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Research projects

We conduct research that leads to the design of innovative, evidence-based policies that promote sustainable improvements in the quality of peoples’ lives and maximise the benefits from international trade.

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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.

aboriginal flag
torres strait flag

Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business.