Children's perceptions of flood risk and preparedness: a study after the May 2018 flooding in Golcuk, Turkey

Ayse Yildiz*, Richard Teeuw, Julie Dickinson, Jessica Roberts

*Corresponding author for this work

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Understanding children's risk perceptions and investigating the underlying factors are fundamental to learning more about how children interpret and respond to flood events. To date, there has been no published research about the flood risk perceptions of children in Turkey. This research aims to fill that gap, seeking a better understanding of children's flood risk perceptions to inform efforts to strengthen their resilience to flooding. We examined how flood experience shapes Turkish children's perceptions of flood risk and their level of preparedness. Children aged 11 to 14 years were surveyed, in six schools of Golcuk city, Turkey, before and after a local flood event that occurred on 27th May 2018. This research applied a mixed-method approach that collected and analysed both quantitative and qualitative data, using the Pictorial Representation of Illness and Self Measure (PRISM) methodology to measure risk perception and preparedness. The research results show that there was no statistically significant difference in children's flood risk perception before and after the local flood event. However, the importance that children placed on preparedness increased after the flood event. The flood preparedness level of the children surveyed indicates that Turkish children have insufficient knowledge of effective flood preparedness activities: there is an urgent need to make them better prepared for floods. Our findings have implications for policy, especially for those living in flood risk areas. Catastrophic flood events are expected to increase because of climate change, so it is becoming increasingly important to understand the causes of flood risk better, how people perceive flood risk, and how they will respond to flood events. Therefore, flood management policies should incorporate the knowledge, skills, and capacities of children into disaster risk reduction strategies, aiming to reduce the impacts of future flood events.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100143
Number of pages9
JournalProgress in Disaster Science
Early online date23 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2021


  • Children
  • Floods
  • Preparedness
  • Risk perception
  • Turkey


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