The Multiple Meanings of 'Resilience': An Overview of the Literature

Richard REID, Linda BOTTERILL

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

‘resilience is in danger of becoming a vacuous buzzword from overuse and ambiguity’ (Rose 2007: 384)

‘Resilience’ is widely used in public policy debate in Australia in contexts as diverse as drought policy, mental fitness in the Australian Defence Force, and in discussion around the Australian economy's performance during the global financial crisis. The following paper provides an overview of the use of the term ‘resilience’ in the academic literature in both the natural and social sciences. The key conclusion from this research is that the term is highly ambiguous, it is used for different purposes in different contexts and in some cases the understandings of the term are diametrically opposed. The malleability of the term suggests that it might be politically risky if employed in policy debate unless clearly defined in each instance
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-40
Number of pages10
JournalAustralian Journal of Public Administration
Volume72
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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resilience
natural sciences
fitness
drought
financial crisis
public policy
social science
economy
performance
literature

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abstract = "‘resilience is in danger of becoming a vacuous buzzword from overuse and ambiguity’ (Rose 2007: 384)‘Resilience’ is widely used in public policy debate in Australia in contexts as diverse as drought policy, mental fitness in the Australian Defence Force, and in discussion around the Australian economy's performance during the global financial crisis. The following paper provides an overview of the use of the term ‘resilience’ in the academic literature in both the natural and social sciences. The key conclusion from this research is that the term is highly ambiguous, it is used for different purposes in different contexts and in some cases the understandings of the term are diametrically opposed. The malleability of the term suggests that it might be politically risky if employed in policy debate unless clearly defined in each instance",
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The Multiple Meanings of 'Resilience': An Overview of the Literature. / REID, Richard; BOTTERILL, Linda.

In: Australian Journal of Public Administration, Vol. 72, No. 1, 2013, p. 31-40.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - BOTTERILL, Linda

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