Citizenship Lab Research Project: “Gender, Health, and Catastrophe – Studying the Impact of the 2022 Superfloods on Women’s Health in Pakistan’s Most Affected Areas”

The Humanities Research Center’s Citizenship Lab proudly funds Arabela Urpi Iggesen Valenzuela’s Signature Work project.

Student: Arabela Urpi Iggesen Valenzuela

Mentor: Professor Umair Sajid 

During the summer of 2022, Pakistan experienced monsoon rains 3-5 times as heavy as the national average, and subsequently the worst-ever recorded floods in their history. This caused unprecedented damage across the country. Combined with pre-existing gender health inequalities, this catastrophe amplified the disease burden faced by women in the most affected areas. This project aims to study the impact of the 2022 “superfloods” on women’s health compared to men and identify patterns driving gender health inequality in times of disaster, through cross-sectional surveys and interviews conducted in the rural communities of southwestern Punjab province, Pakistan. The outcomes of this study will provide valuable insight into the nexus between natural disaster, public health, marginalization, and gender relations in Pakistani tribal communities, which can help future relief efforts address the needs of affected populations more efficiently.