The interface of disasters, sanitation, and poverty in Brazil: a sociological perspective

Norma Valencio* (Corresponding Author), Arthur Valencio, Murilo Baptista

*Corresponding author for this work

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In Brazil, the high frequency and types of disasters are symptoms of misguided socioenvironmental public policies. While about 25% of municipalities decree emergency every year over 75% of the occurrences are linked to sanitation issues. Such events range from the lack of urban drainage infrastructure to handle large volumes of rainwater to the insufficiency of backup water supply strategies during prolonged drought, both further impacting other precarious infrasystems such as the solid waste management and sewage, with the most heavily and extensively affected group being the citizens facing poverty. Therefore, the issues of disaster, sanitation, and poverty are intertwined in Brazil. Using a network science approach, we investigate how the sociological debate is overcoming the fragmented approach about these subthemes as well as within the disciplinary fields in social sciences by analysing the connections between the keywords of the open-access research articles between from 2003 to 2022 from 4 databases. This mini review highlights the main contemporary axes between the themes, identify the potential for tackling the gap at the interface, and clarify the needs for future works, given the aims of the Sustainable Development Goals.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1184532
Number of pages7
JournalFrontiers in Sustainable Cities
Early online date24 May 2023
Publication statusPublished - 24 May 2023

Bibliographical note

NV and MB acknowledge the support of The Royal Society, Grant no. CHL-R1-180122. The authors thank financial support from the Environmental Sciences Portgraduate Programme of the Federal University of São Carlos.
The authors thank the reviewer for the valuable comments.


  • sociology
  • sanitation
  • disaster
  • poverty
  • Brazil
  • inequalities
  • development studies
  • public policies


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