(Trans)local Social Capital and its Role in Enhancing Adaptation to Coastal Hazards: Evidence from Urban Coastal Communities in Indonesia


  • Konstantin Gisevius University of Cologne, Germany
  • Lisa-Michéle Niesters University of Cologne, Germany
  • Ajeng Larasati Palawa Karya, Indonesia
  • Boris Braun University of Cologne, Germany


coastal hazards, social capital, translocality, adaptation, urban communities


Environmental change and sea level rise pose significant challenges to urban coastal communities worldwide, particularly in the Global South. Research on household and community-level adaptation highlights the central role of social capital to reduce vulnerability and enhance resilience. Although local social capital plays a crucial role in adaptation, the importance of translocal social capital, which encompasses social support and resources that extend beyond local boundaries, often remains overlooked by existing research. To broaden our understanding of how social networks and social capital can contribute to the adaptive capacity of vulnerable communities, we investigate the impact of (trans)local social capital on coastal adaptation of flood-prone households in Padang and Denpasar, Indonesia. Using household survey data (N=620) including social network data on flood-related support (N=1169), we analyze the support provided by local and translocal personal contacts. Our findings reveal that local and translocal networks for flood-response support primarily consist of bonding ties. Moreover, our analysis provides empirical evidence that translocal contacts are more likely to provide emotional and moral support, as well as financial and material support, while local contacts are more likely to share flood-related knowledge, skills, advice, and practical support (e.g., physical labor or caregiving). These findings show that local and translocal social capital give access to different types of support, demonstrating their individual benefits for household and community-level adaptation. These insights emphasize the complementary nature of local and translocal bonding social capital in enhancing responses to natural hazards, illustrating how spatial distance shapes support in social networks. This suggests that understanding local adaptation requires a translocal perspective, recognizing that family, household, and community ties transcend spatial boundaries.


Metrics Loading ...






Climate change, resilience, and adaptation of urban built environment