Study on reconstruction from a natural disaster and the progress of urban shrinkage: the case of the eruption disaster of Mt. Unzen-Fugendake, Shimabara, Japan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • University of Oxford
  • Toyohashi University of Technology
  • University of Glasgow
  • University of Cambridge
  • Faculteit der Maatschappij- en Gedragswetenschappen


Natural Disaster gives serious impact and damage to city structure not only by disaster itself but also by reconstruction project after this. In depopulation era like in Japan, it is necessary to consider reconstruction plan in urban shrinking context with future low demand. This study clarifies reconstruction situation after eruption disaster of Mt. Unzen and recent urban shrinking in Shimabara City in order to consider urban resilience lesson. This study takes empirical method with official planning documents research, interview to key persons, questionnaire survey, and so on, and clarifies as follows. Since the residents' intention and consciousness for reconstruction needs to be intensified in reconstruction from a large-scale disaster, the reconstruction plans tend to be expansion-oriented. However, it is an illusion that temporary reconstruction projects bring the recovery of population in local cities in Japan. As the case from Shimabara, the followings can be pointed out as the concrete necessity. First, it is necessary to prepare a plan for housing developments for survivors which considers the future maturation of the development areas (especially the selection of their locations and the necessity of public transportation) and to carry out land readjustment considering demand for land after completion. In addition, as symbolically indicated by the abolishment of a Shimabara Railroad line after its reconstruction, it is necessary to prepare reconstruction plans of public transportation based on a strict demand forecast. Furthermore, reconstruction projects should be incorporated into city planning considering its sustainability.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-152
Number of pages18
JournalUrban and Regional Planning Review
Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 2018


  • Natural Disaster, Reconstruction, Urban Shrinkage, Resilience, Eruption Disaster of Mt. Unzen-Fugendake

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