Resilience Governance

a good place for disabled people to shape and resist problematic resilience discourses?

  • Nicole Mfoafo-M’Carthy Bachelor of Health Sciences student Cumming School of Medicine University of Calgary
  • Gregor Wolbring Department of Community Health Sciences Cumming School of Medicine University of Calgary

Abstract

Resilience is a concept employed within an increasing scope including ecology, security, social sciences and human psychology. It is applied to various social groups including disabled people. At the same time there are numerous critiques within and outside of the disability community of how resilience is conceptualized and operationalized. The media is a tool used to inform the public and to shape public discourses. Many discourses are seen to be in need of governance actions such as science and technology or global health including the resilience discourse. Our study contributes to the discussions around resilience and disabled people in two ways. First we add qualitative data on the narrative of resilience in relation to disabled people in Canadian newspapers. Our findings reveal very little mentioning of disabled people within the newspapers covered whereby the nature of the coverage exhibits many of the facets for which the resilience discourse is critiqued within and outside of the disability community. Secondly we use a governance lens to analyze the existing governance of resilience discourse to ascertain whether a governance of resilience discourse might be a place for the disability community to shape resilience discourses. We suggest that the existing governance of resilience discourse has to change substantially, to be able to govern resilience discourses in a way that prevents negative impacts of resilience discourses on disabled people. Given the premise of governance as used in other discourses disabled people could lead to a positive change by influencing the resilience governance discourse.

Author Biographies

Nicole Mfoafo-M’Carthy, Bachelor of Health Sciences student Cumming School of Medicine University of Calgary

Bachelor of Health Sciences student

Cumming School of Medicine

 University of Calgary

Gregor Wolbring, Department of Community Health Sciences Cumming School of Medicine University of Calgary

Department of Community Health Sciences

Cumming School of Medicine

University of Calgary

Published
2019-07-01