Editor's Introduction

November 1995 (VOL. 13, NO. 3)

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We discuss earlier observations and meetings which led us to propose that a special issue of the journal be published on theoretical aspects of disasters, especially on how the term “disaster” ought to be conceptualized. Our basic position is the field cannot develop well as a research enterprise unless there is a great clarity and more consensus about the central concept in the field. We particularly note that there are both old and new classification problems that need to be addressed in asking: What is a disaster?