Publication Date

Fall 2009

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




James Lee.

Subject Areas

Engineering, Civil.; Sociology, Individual and Family Studies.; Sociology, Public and Social Welfare.


This study is an expansion of previous research and a pilot study conducted on the barriers to hazard mitigation. Using a sample of 235 American Red Cross staff members and volunteers, factors such as the barriers and incentives around earthquake mitigation were assessed. Demographic characteristics and threat perceptions were also measured and compared to respondents' mitigation activities. While few demographic characteristics could be related to mitigation activity overall, findings were consistent with information found in the literature review and the pilot study. Barriers to mitigation were generally cost, time required, lack of information, and a feeling that it was unnecessary or useless. Incentives that were highly ranked were those that provided financial assistance or free items or services. Generally, respondents perceived that any earthquake that would happen in the near future had the potential to cause damage or injury. In turn, respondents had mitigated to varying degrees. It was found that respondents who knew someone who had mitigated were also more likely to practice mitigation, and respondents' relationships with individuals who had experienced damage or injury from an earthquake did have some positive influence on mitigation activity.