Community business resilience: Adaptation practice of micro- and small enterprises around the Pearl River Estuary

Alex Y. LO, Sin Yin Alice CHOW, Shuwen LIU, Ting On Lewis CHEUNG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Small community businesses bear the brunt of climate change impacts. Studies of the vulnerability and resilience of such businesses predominantly focus on firm-level characteristics and organizational issues. This paper addresses the lack of individual-level considerations. It explores an analytical approach that draws upon the concepts of social capital and sense of place for understanding community businesses' resilience to extreme weather. An empirical study was conducted to investigate whether and how the attributes of these concepts are related to adaptation practice. This study is based on a structured questionnaire survey of community businesses at various locations around the Pearl River Estuary that are exposed to storm surges. The findings partially support the hypothesis that action is more likely to be taken when social capital is strong. Community businesses are more likely to adopt adaptation strategies when their owners or operators perceive a higher level of social expectation, but are less likely to do so when they have better relationships with the people around them. This study indicated the potential for moral hazard driven by good social relationships and supported the understanding of small community businesses as firms and social agents in responding to climate change impacts. There is a need for recognizing the social dimensions of small businesses' rationality in their adaptation and hazard adjustment, and strengthening their engagement with community-based adaptation through social institutions. Copyright © 2019 Springer Nature B.V.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-585
JournalClimatic Change
Volume157
Issue number3-4
Early online dateOct 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019

Citation

Lo, A. Y., Chow, A. S. Y., Liu, S., & Cheung, L. T. O. (2019). Community business resilience: Adaptation practice of micro- and small enterprises around the Pearl River Estuary. Climatic Change, 157(3-4), 565-585. doi: 10.1007/s10584-019-02562-y

Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Climate change
  • Social capital
  • Community business
  • Extreme weather
  • China

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