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Sociology Subject Guide — SOCI1251: Sociology of Disaster

General resources for sociology

Getting Started

Photo shows smokes rising from burning homes in Yamadamachi in Iwate Prefecture, northern Japan a day after a strong earthquake triggered a devastating tsunami in the area in 2011.Welcome!! This page offers your resources useful for your SOCI 1251: Sociology of Disaster research projects. If you have questions or need help with your assignment, feel free to contact me anytime!

When starting your research you should gather some background information about your topic. Doing that will help you to:

  • Get a general understanding about the main topic topic (nature and/or man-made disasters) and the main issues about it
  • Gather some basic keywords that will guide your searches
  • Identify a potential topic for deeper research

Academic books and journals and newspapers and magazines' articles are essential to this process. In this page I showcase some useful resources to get you started in this process.

When searching books, academic articles or newspapers' articles, you can do broad searches about disasters such as "big AND disaster", "mega AND Disaster"; "major AND catastrophe"; "terrorist attacks" or you can narrow down your searches by using specific keywords for particular type of disasters, e.g. earthquakes; hurricanes; tsunamis; "land slides";  "nuclear meltdown", etc... Below are some suggestions of books and major databases to get you started for your research project.

Photo info: Shimizu, Kenji (2011). This March 12, 2011 file photo shows smokes rising from burning homes in Yamadamachi in Iwate Prefecture, northern Japan a day after a strong earthquake triggered a devastating tsunami in the area. Yamadamachi, Japan: Associated Press.

Finding Sources

Finding academic's articles: This databases are a good starting point to find academic/scholarly/peer-reviewed articles.

Please login with your UConn Net ID and password to access licensed resources 

Finding newspapers' articles: Check this databases for the most current reporting of disasters and eye witnesses accounts.

Finding Books

You can find books, journals' articles and videos by searching the Library's General Search. It is one stop shop for search all our library resources.

Below are some books that make help you in your research!

US and World Disasters' Data, Reports & Resources

SHELDUS (Spatial Hazard Events & Losses Database for the United States) is an excellent resource to learn more about specific hazard events or disasters in the United States. It is free to use but you need to register to use it. This database includes the following information:

  • The location of where the loss occurred: State, County, and FIPS code
  • The date when the loss occurred: begin and end date (day, month, year)
  • The type of loss experienced: property and crop damage, fatalities, and injuries
  • The type of hazard that triggered the loss: SHELDUS™ hazard category and remarks (description according to the original source)
  • Miscellaneous (where available): named major disaster, Presidential Disaster Declaration number (PDD), Global Disaster Identifier number (GLIDE)

Government (both local and nationwide) prepare disaster plans to be used in case of a catastrophe. See below for some resources on this topic: