Floods and droughts—the most frequent water-related hazards are negatively impacting livelihoods across the world, particularly in Sub-Saharan African countries, where poverty remains endemic. Naturally, victims adopt different coping strategies against burgeoning hydro-meteorological hazards. Contemporary research on determinants for coping decisions in SSA has been largely driven by isolated case studies, of little relevance for broad-based policy making. We analyze the determinants for coping with floods and droughts across multiple geo-ecological zones in Cameroon. Quantitative data primarily obtained from 2024 flood and drought household victims in the Western Highlands and Sudano-Sahelian Upland geo-ecological zones are analyzed alongside qualitative data obtained through 31 FGDs and 99 IDIs using descriptive statistics and regression analysis in MS Excel 2013 and SPSS 20 for the questionnaires and content analysis in Nvivo 11 for the unstructured interviews. Results reveal government policy, socio-cultural, economic and educational factors, and hazard experience as major shapers of coping decisions, irrespective of hazard type, timing and geo-ecology (P = 0.05). In contrast to the state-of-the-art, we observed livelihoods improvement after some hazardous events. The policy implications for long-term coping and resilience building are then discussed.
Part of the book: Natural Hazards