This study aims contribute to the existing evidence base on how social capital can be harnessed to strengthen disaster risk reduction (DRR) in Thailand. While social capital is generally recognised as an important means to building community resilience, there is still little knowledge about how it can be best utilised towards DRR efforts. The study is based on a literature review and field work carried out in three communities in Thailand.


  • The study finds that, despite the attachment and harmony that people feel towards their community, levels of social trust are low. This has implications not only for Thai communities’ abilities to respond to, and cope with, disasters, but also in their abilities to prosper and thrive as a nation.
  • Thai communities are built on strong family ties and on strong bonds with friends and neighbours. It is a society of very strong immediate networks, in that very few people lack a support network. However, this means that, for the minority that do lack social capital, life can be extremely difficult. As such, investments in social capital must ensure that they are broad-based and inclusive, with a focus on integrating marginalised populations, such as undocumented migrant communities or political and religious minorities.

Usage: Learning from experience

Audiences: National Society leadership, Technical staff


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