UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

Flood, Vulnerability and Resilience, 2007-2009

Title details

SN: 6605
Title: Flood, Vulnerability and Resilience, 2007-2009
Alternative title: Flood, Vulnerability and Resilience: a Real-Time Study of Local Recovery Following the Floods of June 2007 in Hull
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-6605-1
Depositor: Whittle, R., Lancaster Environment Centre
Principal investigator(s): Medd, W., Lancaster Environment Centre
Data collector(s): Medd, W., Lancaster Environment Centre
Mort, M., Lancaster University. Institute for Health Research
Twigger-Ross, C., Collingwood Environmental Planning
Whittle, R., Lancaster Environment Centre
Kashefi, E., Lancaster University. Institute for Health Research
Sponsor(s): Economic and Social Research Council
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Environment Agency
Grant number: RES-177-25-0004
Other acknowledgements: The principal investigators would like to express their thanks to the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the Environment Agency for funding this study.

They would also like to thank the many organizations and individuals in Hull who helped them during the early stages of setting up this project. Special thanks go to Barbara Onley, of the Yorkshire and Humber Neighbourhood Resource Centre, Hull Community Wardens and the staff at Hull City Council who played a key part in welcoming the researchers to the city and helping them make vital contacts there.

The researchers would also like to thank the staff at the Octagon and Hull Truck Theatre, where they hosted their final project workshop.

Finally, a special thank you goes to the project's steering group members and, of course, to the diarists – without whom none of this would have been possible.

The depositor of the study, Dr. Rebecca Whittle, was formerly known as Dr. Rebecca Sims, and may listed as such in some of the study publications and study material.


The citation for this study is:

Medd, W. (2011). Flood, Vulnerability and Resilience, 2007-2009. [data collection]. UK Data Service. SN: 6605,

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Subject Categories

Environmental and conservation issues - Environment, conservation and land use
Income, property and investment - Economics
Social attitudes and behaviour - Society and culture


Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

This is a qualitative data collection. The research used diaries, semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions of householders, floodworkers and other affected stakeholders and followed the recovery experiences of people across Hull after the floods of June 2007 which affected over 8,600 households across the city.

The project undertook a real-time longitudinal study to document and understand the everyday experiences of individuals following the floods of June 2007 in interaction with
networks of actors and organisations, strategies of institutional support and investment in the built environment and infrastructure. The research aimed (i) to identify and document key dimensions of the longer term experience of flood impact and flood recovery, including health, economic and social aspects, (ii) to examine how resilience and vulnerability were manifest in the interaction between everyday strategies of adaptation during the flood recovery process, and modes of institutional support and the management of infrastructure and the built environment, (iii) to explore to what extent the recovery process entailed the development of new forms of resilience and to identify the implications for developing local level resilience for flood recovery in the future, and (iv) to develop an archive that will be accessible for future research into other aspects of flood recovery.

The findings showed flood recovery to be a long and difficult process with no clear beginning or end. Far from being an incremental, linear process, respondents' recovery is punctuated by 'highs' and 'lows' which are closely tied to other pressures and life events. Recovery is not complete when people move 'back home', as aspects of daily life are shown to have fundamentally changed – both for better and for worse. Many of the difficulties experienced by residents result from the existence of a 'recovery gap'. This emerges as the legally-defined contingency arrangements provided to the community by its local authority diminish and the less well-defined services provided by the non statutory/private sector e.g. insurance, builders start. The nature of this gap means that residents receive little support during this time and, as a result, they must attempt to coordinate the actions of the different organizations involved. Such 'project management' is time-consuming, exhausting and stressful as it requires residents to acquire new skills, challenge 'expert' judgements and engage in new kinds of physical, mental and emotional work. By suggesting ways in which residents can be better supported, the research is of direct practical relevance for organizations involved in recovery and the building of resilience.

Further information about the project may be found on the Flood, vulnerability and resilience: a real-time study of local recovery following the floods of June 2007 in Hull webpage.
Main Topics:
Floods, community and local authorities' management and response to a natural disaster, welfare of flood victims and those around them, hardships and how they affect family relationships, welfare of crisis response staff.

Coverage, universe, methodology

Time period: October 2007 - April 2009
Dates of fieldwork: October 2007 - April 2009
Country: United Kingdom
Geography: Anlaby
Yorkshire East Riding
Spatial units: No spatial unit
Observation units: Individuals
Kind of data: Textual data
Universe: Subnational
Flooded residents and frontline workers affected by the floods of June 2007 in Hull
Time dimensions: 18-month, continuous study through interviews, weekly diaries and group discussions,Longitudinal, Panel or Cohort survey (including Rotational Panel)
Sampling procedures: Purposive selection/case studies
Number of units: 19 focus group interviews; 54 face-to-face interviews; 1 observation note; 42 diaries
Method of data collection: Face-to-face interview; Telephone interview; Observation; Diaries; Focus group
Weighting: Not applicable

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Administrative and access information

Date of release:
First edition: 31 January 2011
Copyright: Copyright W. Medd and R. Whittle
Access conditions: The depositor has specified that registration is required. Available to all registered users. The depositor may be informed about usage.
Availability: UK Data Service
Contact: Get in touch


Title File Name Size (KB)
Data List 6605ulist.xls 38
User Guide 6605uguide.pdf 5707
Data List 6605ulist.pdf 79
Study information and citation UKDA_Study_6605_Information.htm 23
READ File read6605.htm 3


View publications... Hide publications...

By principal investigator(s):
Deeming, H., Whittle, R. and Medd, W. (2011) ‘Investigating resilience through 'before' and 'after' perspectives on residual risk’, in S. Bennett (ed.) Innovative thinking in risk, crisis and disaster management, Farnham: Ashgate.

Sims, R. et al. (2009) ‘When a ‘home’ becomes a ‘house’: care and caring in the flood recovery process’, Space and Culture, 12(3), pp. 303-316, DOI: 10.1177/1206331209337077

Sims, R. et al. (2009) Locally appropriate response and recovery - response to Defra consultation on the National Flood Emergency Framework, Lancaster: Lancaster University.

Sims, R. et al. (2008) ‘A case study to support these concerns handling personal property - findings from Hull’, in L. Easthope (ed.) The human aspects of flooding: personal effects, Hartfield: University of Hertfordshire.

Sims, R. et al. (2008) Perspectives on resilience from households in Hull – response to Defra consultation on policy options for promoting property-level flood protection and resilience, Lancaster: Lancaster University.

Sims, R. et al. (2008) The ongoing experience of recovery for households in Hull, response to the Pitt Review Interim Report Learning the lessons from the 2007 floods, Lancaster: Lancaster University.

Walker, G. et al. (2011) ‘Assembling the flood: producing spaces of bad water in the city of Hull’, Environment and Planning A, Special Edition.

Walker, M. et al. (2010) Children and young people ‘After the rain has gone’ – learning lessons for flood recovery and resilience: Final project report for ‘Children, Flood and Urban Resilience: Understanding children and young people’s experience and agency in the flood recovery process’, Lancaster: Lancaster University.

Whittle, R. and Medd, W. (2011) ‘Living with flood? Understanding residents’ experiences of recovery’ in J. Lamond et al. (eds.) Flood hazards, impacts and responses for the built environment, London: Taylor and Francis. ISBN: 9781439826256

Whittle, R., and Medd, W. (2010) ‘Bridging the recovery gap’, in S. Guy et al. (eds.) Intermediaries and the governance of socio-technical networks, London: Earthscan.

Whittle, R. et al. (2010) After the rain - learning the lessons from flood recovery in Hull : final project report for ‘Flood, vulnerability and urban resilience: a real-time study of local recovery following the floods of June 2007 in Hull', Lancaster: Lancaster University.

Whittle, R. et al. (2009) Submission by Lancaster University for the Defra consultation on the draft Flood and Water Management Bill. Lancaster: Lancaster University.

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