Building Global Social Capital through Social Science and Liberal Arts Education in the New Media Age: A Comprehensive Approach to Mitigate World Disasters

By Golam M. Mathbor and Nairruti Jani.

Published by The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Global Studies

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Liberal Arts education has a strong emphasis on the utilization of human and social capital in addressing people’s needs and identifying credible solutions both locally and globally. Similarly, social science education provides applied learning through community organization approach. For example, a case study of Bangladesh mentioned in the world press is an extremely successful community based model for disaster prone regions of the world. This article explores disaster preparedness by incorporating social capital theory in higher education combined with new media for applied practice experience in times of disasters. Throughout history, the coastal people of Bangladesh have contended with natural disasters of epic scale. The results have ranged from heavy losses of human lives and cattle, to property damage worth billions of dollars. In 1966, the International Federation of Red Cross and the Swedish Red Cross Society helped by implementing a pilot scheme for Cyclone Preparedness Program (CPP) in the disaster prone areas of Bangladesh to strengthen the capacity of the coastal people through sustained training activities. This article is based on CPP to understand the context and process that helps to reduce damages as a result of natural disasters in coastal Bangladesh. The article highlights how CPP of Bangladesh Red Cross society developed its social capital to respond effectively saving lives and properties before, during, and after natural disaster. This article educates the reader about how to integrate disaster perspectives in developing courses for their social science and liberal arts curricula, and link it with social networking websites through new media to build social capital, exploring further opportunities to strengthen disaster mitigation and preparedness.

Keywords: Social Science, Civic Engagement, Social Capital, Interdisciplinary, Disaster Management

The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Global Studies, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp.1-10. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 248.650KB).

Prof. Golam M. Mathbor

Professor and Associate Dean, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Monmouth University, West Long Branch, USA

Dr. Golam M. Mathbor is the Associate Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, and a tenured Full Professor in the School of Social Work at Monmouth University, New Jersey, USA. Dr. Mathbor obtained his BSS (Bachelor of Social Science), MSS (Master’s of Social Science) and an LL.B (Bachelor of Law) degree from the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Dr. Mathbor then obtained his second master’s MSW (Master of Social Work) from McGill University, Canada; and a Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) degree in Social Policy Analysis from the Faculty of Social Work of The University of Calgary, Canada. Dr. Mathbor is a graduate of Harvard University’s Management Development Program. Currently, he is serving as a Vice President of the American Institute of Bangladesh Studies (AIBS), and as Vice President of the International Consortium for Social Development (ICSD). He is the founding President of the Long Branch Concordance, a 501c (3) non profit community service organization in the State of New Jersey serving in the City of Long Branch. Professor Mathbor chaired and delivered keynote address for the 17th ICSD International Symposium on “Good Governance: Building Knowledge for Social Development Worldwide” held in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Dr. Nairruti Jani

Assistant Professor, Social Work, Florida Gulf Coast University, USA

Dr. Nairruti Jani is an Assistant Professor at Florida Gulf Coast University in the Division of Social Work. She has worked extensively in the field of Human Rights, Human Development, Disaster Management and Violence against women. She was born in India and obtained her MSW from TISS, Mumbai in 2000. She was a human right scholar with British Council at University of Warwick, UK and completed her LLM in 2003. She completed her Ph.D. in Social Work with a focus on human trafficking from University of Texas at Arlington. She is actively involved in research and advocacy to serve victims of human trafficking. She is also a documentarian and has produced two documentary films on human trafficking. She has presented her work in several national and international conferences and has been key note speaker for conferences on Women’s Rights.