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Yohe, Gary


Latin American Studies




In their paper, "Indicators for social and economic coping capacity - moving toward a working definition of adaptive capacity," Yohe and Tol outline eight key determinants used to evaluate a system's adaptive capacity and eventually guide policymaking decisions. The goal of this framework is "to produce unitless indicators that can be employed to judge the relative vulnerabilities of diverse systems to multiple stress and to their potential interactions." Working from surveys and interviews of artisanal fishermen in the disaster-vulnerable Estuario de Caráquez, Ecuador, this paper proposes an additional determinant - dependency. In the case of the estuary, many of the determinants are weak and yet adaptive options are available that depend on outside aid or the presence of foreigners. With dependency as a determinant, a discussion of adaptive capacity can balance the influx of resources, human capital, and legitimacy foreigners bring against the increased vulnerability of depending on outside actors.



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