Anchors of social network awareness index: A key to modeling postdisaster housing recovery

Ali Nejat, Saeed Moradi, Souparno Ghosh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Reestablishment of housing is a crucial component of the recovery process and has a domino effect on the overall timing of recovery. Anchors of social networks, such as schools and churches, on the other hand, are perceived to be influential in housing recovery decisions. This study provides a model for indexing households' anchors of social network awareness based on publicly available data. This model uses individual-level data to develop a county-level index of anchors of social network awareness. This allows devising recovery strategies that are tailored to the needs of residents within a given county. Data were collected through an internet survey targeting New York and Louisiana, which were highly impacted by Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina. The survey asked participants to draw a polygon around their perceived neighborhood area in Google Maps. Then, follow-up questions were asked to identify key anchors driving this perception. Latent class analysis (LCA) and regression revealed the existence of multiple latent classes, each corresponding to a certain demographic and socioeconomic group. Finally, a county-level index of anchors of social network awareness was developed using individual-level latent classes. This index can be used by policyholders as a decision support tool for prioritizing anchors that are deemed to be important in a given county for receiving recovery assistance, which can then lead to a more enhanced recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Article number04019004
JournalJournal of Infrastructure Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019


  • Anchors of social network
  • Decision support tool
  • Latent class analysis
  • Multilevel analysis
  • Policymaking
  • Postdisaster recovery


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