Everyday risk

Day-to-day conditions that severely impede the achievement of a healthy and productive life by different sections of a society or a community. These include conditions such as lack of access to basic services, infrastructure, and livelihood opportunities as well as overall well-being.


1. Also known as "Quotidian risk" or "Chronic stresses".

2. Such risk is seen as a precursor to extensive and intensive disaster risk and disaster. See also "Social construction of risk", "Extensive disaster risk" and "Intensive disaster risk".

3. The term “everyday” may be taken by some to mean “normalcy,” which could lead to the conclusion that these conditions are unavoidable. However, the concept of “everyday risk” is an important one, and widely used in social science research, because it highlights the fact that disaster risk is often constructed on the basis of the chronic, quotidian, ongoing unsafe and insecure living conditions of individuals, families and communities, which comprise their "normalcy". It forms an important part of the spectrum of risk, from everyday, to extensive, to intensive. Only by recognising this can everyday risk become addressable; i.e. by integrating disaster risk reduction into sustainable development objectives and planning processes related to such goals as the reduction of poverty, inequality and exclusion, or improving access to health and employment.


Reference for Note 2: Maskrey, A., Jain, G., Lavell, A. (2021). “The Social Construction of Systemic Risk: Towards an Actionable Framework for Risk Governance”. United Nations Development Programme, Discussion Paper. 


Everyday risk in Somalia

The country of Somalia has been in a state of perpetual crisis since 1991, fueled by political instability and civil strife. Over the decades, recurrent droughts, floods and desertification are wreaking havoc on Somalia’s agriculture and livestock sectors, plunging the country into an unsustainable cycle. These sectors, which have sustained the Somalis for centuries, are being undone by the effects of the climate emergency. The impact of drought on the people is compounded by an interrelated set of factors that include environment, government, conflict, displacement, and poverty.