Children's earthquake preparedness and risk perception: A comparative study of two cities in Turkey, using a modified PRISM approach

Ayse Yildiz, Richard Teeuw, Julie Dickinson, Jessica Roberts

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17 Citations (Scopus)
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Understanding children's risk perception and investigating the underlying factors are important aspects of examining how children interpret and respond to earthquake events. This research examines children's perceptions of earthquake risk and preparedness level in the Van and Kocaeli provinces of Turkey. A mixed-method approach is used, with questionnaires and interviews, as well as the Pictorial Representation of Illness and Self Measure (PRISM) technique. The results show that the majority of the school children did not attend disaster education programs, even if they were living in an area of high seismic risk. The sampled children were generally aware of the earthquake risk in their home area. However, their levels of preparedness were low. A consistent relationship was found between: (1) earthquake risk perception, (2) earthquake awareness, (3) factual knowledge of preparedness, (4) importance of preparedness, and (5) earthquake education programs. The results indicate that children who participated in earthquake education programs had higher earthquake awareness, foresee future earthquake occurrence and the potential causes of injury. Also highlighted was the importance of information sharing within families, as a factor influencing children's earthquake risk perception and preparedness. The results are considered of value for actors in the disaster risk reduction sector. They provide perception insights to improve the communication and dissemination of information about earthquake risk.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101666
JournalInternational Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction
Early online date24 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020

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Funding Information: This paper is based on a Ph.D. research project of the first author/lead researcher, funded by the Turkish Ministry of National Education.


  • Children
  • Earthquakes
  • Preparedness
  • Risk perception
  • Turkey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Safety Research
  • Geology


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