Interactional approach to adaptive capacity: Researching adaptation in socially diverse, wildfire prone communities

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This article outlines an approach for understanding the ways that local social context influences differential community adaptation to wildfire risk. I explain how my approach drew from Wilkinson’s interactional theory of community during various stages of its evolution and describe a series of advancements developed while extending the theory to promote collective action for wildfire. Extensions of Wilkinson’s work include organizing a range of adaptive capacity characteristics that help document differential community capacity for wildfire adaptation, introduction of “community archetypes” that reflect patterns of key adaptive capacity characteristics across cases, and development of fire adaptation “pathways” – combinations of policies, actions, and programs tailored to a range of community conditions.

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