The Post-Sandstorm Rehabilitation of Rural Settlements Using Action Research Method; the Case of Sang Abad, Kerman Province

Document Type : Original Article


1 Professor Emeritus, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Shahid Beheshti University

2 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Shahid Beheshti University

3 MSc, Post-Disaster Reconstruction, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Shahid Beheshti University


Deemed to be one of the most important problems in desert areas, sandstorms are among regularly-occurring disasters. They particularly affect rural areas due to their vulnerability, causing many economic, livelihood-related, physical, social, cultural, and environmental damages. Reagan County in Kerman province is known as one of the country’s most critical areas in this respect, with recent incidents causing 50 evacuations, and damages to a further 150 villages. Widespread droughts in recent decades have caused a lot of damage to the area’s nomadic communities such Sang Abad. Bearing in mind the frequent recurrence of the hazard, the rural settlements of this area are exposed to gradual decay. Exposure to local and regional sources of sandstorms, the high levels of vulnerability, and the poverty and deprivation necessitates the rehabilitation of the village.
The action research method is used here. For two years, the researchers have participated in the reconstruction of Sang Abad village (August 2016 - September 2018). Devising a comprehensive and integrated reconstruction planning for the village, they have intervened in rehabilitation and reconstruction keeping in close contact with the residents. The findings have then gone through process of assessment and valuation obtained from the study of the action research methodology. Bearing in mind the differences between the method used here with those of mainstream approaches to reconstruction studies, the feasibility of using this method in future reconstruction studies is also examined. The results of evaluating rehabilitation and reconstruction activities in Sang Abad have shown the effectiveness of these activities in reducing sandstorm hazards. It also seems that rehabilitation of the economy and livelihood is one of the most critical reconstruction priorities in rehabilitation of rural settlements exposed to sandstorms and in particular Sangabad.


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