eCite Digital Repository

Beyond binary: (re)defining “gender” for 21st century disaster risk reduction research, policy, and practice


Rushton, A and Gray, L and Canty, J and Blanchard, K, Beyond binary: (re)defining 'gender' for 21st century disaster risk reduction research, policy, and practice, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16, (20) pp. 1-14. ISSN 1661-7827 (2019) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2019 The Author(s) Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.3390/ijerph16203984


The dominant discourse of gender focuses on the binary of woman/man, despite the known additional risks for diverse sexualities and gender minorities in disasters. Given the small but growing body of literature concerning gender minorities in disasters, this paper sets out to explore the place of sex and gender minorities in disasters and to examine whether a binary definition needs to be extended. A five-stage rapid review was undertaken following Arksey and O’Malley’s method. Peer-reviewed journal articles in English language were sought that included disaster and gender terms in the title, abstract, and/or body of the article published between January 2015 and March 2019. The search included MEDLINE and Scopus databases. Relevant information from the studies were charted in Microsoft Excel, and results were summarized using a descriptive analytical method. In total, 728 records were identified; 248 that did not meet the inclusion criteria were excluded and 166 duplicates were removed. A total of 315 records were sourced and their full text was reviewed. Of those, only 12 journal articles included content relative to more than two genders. We also recognized that sex and gender terms were used interchangeably with no clear differentiation between the two. We recommend that disaster scholars and practitioners adopt correct terminology and expand their definition of gender beyond the binary; utilize work on gender fluidity and diversity; and apply this to disaster research, policy, and practice. View Full-Text

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:gender, sexual and gender minorities, disaster response, public health
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Gender studies
Research Field:Gender relations
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Health protection and disaster response
UTAS Author:Canty, J (Dr Justin Canty)
ID Code:135452
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:22
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2019-10-22
Last Modified:2019-11-12
Downloads:19 View Download Statistics

Repository Staff Only: item control page