Document Type : Original Article


Department of Geography and Rural Planing, Dr. Ali Shariati Faculty of letters and Humanities, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran


Nowadays, communities are trying to achieve the conditions that would allow them to quickly return to the pre-crisis situation in the event of a crisis. So, in recent years, the concept of resilience has been taken into account instead of vulnerability. Due to the frequency of occurrence, universality and having many harmful effects, drought has always been one of the main challenges of the country and has caused many problems in the livelihoods of rural households. Accordingly, the present study aimed to provide optimal strategies to enhance the survival of rural households in the face of drought through a general management model based on the prescriptive paradigm.
Material and methods:
A descriptive-analytical research methodology was conducted with a unit of analysis of 96 knowledgeable local people in eight villages exposed to drought in the Golmakan village of Chenaran county in Khorasan Razavi Province. In this study, two strategic planning tools (SWOT and QSPM) were used. In this regard, based on field studies and extensive documentation, 13 strengths and four opportunities were identified as advantages and 12 weaknesses and three threats as limitations for the resilience of rural households exposed to drought. Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.89 for the 17 advantages equal to 0.69 for respondents for 17, and for the total questionnaire 0.84 for optimal diagnosis.
Results and discussion:
In the SWOT matrix, the final score was 1.33 points more than the final score of the weaknesses with 0.88, also in the external factors evaluation matrix, the final score of the opportunities was 0.99 higher than the final score of the threats with 0.93, Where the total score of the internal matrix is 2.15 and the total final score of the external matrix is 1.91, the system status is weak in the external environment. In this study, six competitive strategies, four diversity strategies, five review strategies, and seven defensive strategies were presented in order to increase the resilience of rural farmers according to the internal and external matrices. According to the final score of IFE=2.21 and EFE=1.91, in order to increase the resilience of rural households, optimal defensive strategies (minimum-minimum) were identified in the IF matrix. In addition, based on the analysis of the QSPM matrix among the seven defensive strategies, the first and most important strategy was identified as "diversifying the economy of rural areas exposed to drought" with a score of 2.42. Exploratory studies indicated the dependency of livelihoods of the rural area in the agricultural area and the lack of diversity in livelihood and occupational structures of villagers. These increased their vulnerability to external impulses. Therefore, the diversification of rural economies in the face of drought is an indispensable necessity.
Complex and diverse defensive activities in confronting possible and uncertain risks can stabilize household income in order to reduce the vulnerability of households to possible crises over time. Therefore, the best strategy for increasing the livelihoods of rural households is the diversification of the rural economy.


  1. Adger, W.N., 2000. Social and ecological resilience: are they related? Progress in Human Geography. 24(3), 347-364.
  2. Alavizadeh, A., 2010. The role of variation of economic activities in sustainable rural development (case study: Semirom Province). MSc. Thesis. Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran.
  3. Amirzadeh, M.S. and Barakpoor, N., 2019. Developing a framework for community resilience to drought in Isfahan through qualitative research method and ATLAS-ti Software. Journal of Environmental Study. 44(4), 763-783.
  4. Asghari Sarazankrud, S., Jalalian, H., Azizpour, F. and Asghari Sarasankarood, S., 2016. Selection of optimal livelihood strategy in drought facing using SWOT-TOPSIS (case study: central district of Hashtrood). Quarterly Journal of Geographic Space. 55, 313- 339.
  5. Berkes, F. and Ross, H., 2016. Panarchy and community resilience: sustainability science and policy implications. Environmental Science & Policy. 61, 185-193.
  6. Burchfield, E., Williams, N.E. and Carrico, A.R., 2018. Rescaling drought mitigation in rural Sri Lanka. Regional Environmental Change. 18(8), 2495-2503.
  7. Caldwell, K. and Boyd, C.P., 2009. Coping and resilience in farming families affected by drought. Rural and Remote Health. 9, 1-10.
  8. Cooper, S. and Wheeler, T., 2015. Adaptive governance: Livelihood innovation for climate resilience in Uganda. Geoforum. 65, 96–107.
  9. Dadashpour, H. and Adeli, Z., 2015. Measurement of resilience capacity in Qazvin city complex. Quarterly Journal of Crisis Management. 8, 73-84.
  10. Ebrahimzadeh, J. and Aghasi Zadeh, A., 2009. Analysis of factors affecting the development of tourism in the Chabahar Coastal Region using the SWOT strategy model. Urban and Regional Studies. 1, 128-107.
  11. Elasha, B.O., Elhassan, N.G., Ahmed, H. and Zakieldin, S., 2005. Sustainable livelihood approach for assessing community resilience to climate change: case studies from Sudan. Assessments of Impacts and Adaptations to Climate Change (AIACC) Working Paper 17, Washington, USA.
  12. FalSoleiman, M. and Sadeghi, H., 2013. Analysis of agricultural sector's capabilities in South Khorasan Province for sustainable development using SWOT model. Geography and Development. 30, 156-139.
  13. Farzad-Behtash, M., Keynezhad, M.A., PirBabaei, M.T. and Asgari, A., 2013. Assessment and analysis of dimensions and components of resilience of the metropolis of Tabriz. Journal of Fine Arts, Architecture and Urban Development. 3, 33-43.
  14. Gaillard, J.C., 2007. Resilience of traditional societies in facing natural hazards. Disaster, Prevention and Management. 16, 522-544.
  15. German, L. and Schoneveld, G., 2012. A review of social sustainability considerations among EU-approved voluntary schemes for biofuels, with implications for rural livelihoods. Energy Policy. 51, 765-778.
  16. Ghasemi, M., 2010. Population sustainability of rural settlements in Mashhad with emphasis on diversification of economic activities. Ph. D. Thesis. Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran.
  17. Ghiyasvand, A. and AbdulShah, F., 2015. Concept and evaluation of Iran's economic resilience. Quarterly Journal of Economic Research. 59, 161- 187.
  18. Heidari Sarban, V. and Majnouni Tutakhane, A., 2016. Role of livelihoods diversity in resilience of rural households around the Lake of Urmia against drought. Environmental Spatial Analysis of Environmental Hazards. 4, 49-70.
  19. Jafari, F., Shaban Ali Qomi, H. and Daneshvar Ameri, J., 2012. Analysis and analysis of farmers' perceptions about drought management strategies (case study: Tarom Oliya city). Geographical Studies of Arid Regions. 4(5), 171-186.
  20. Khalatbari, J. and Bahari, S., 2010. The relationship between resilience and life satisfaction. Quarterly Journal of Educational Psychology, Islamic Azad University. 2, 83-94.
  21. Klein, R.J., Nicholls, R.J. and Thomalla, F., 2003. Resilience to natural hazards: how useful is this concept? Global Environmental Change Part B: Environmental Hazards. 5(1), 35-45.
  22. Mahdizad, W., 2016. Sanandaj City Resilience in environmental dimension. In Proceedings First International Conference on Urban Economics. 30 th May, Tehran, Iran. pp. 1274-1282.
  23. Mavhura, E., 2017. Applying a systems-thinking approach to community resilience analysis using rural livelihoods: the case of Muzarabani district, Zimbabwe. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction. 25, 248-258.
  24. Milestad, R., 2004. Building farm resilience, challenges and prospects for organic farming. Ph.D. Thesis. Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences Uppsala, Sweden.
  25. Moradi, F., 2011. Comprehensive view of strategic management: history, models, tools, schools, new approaches and concepts as well as common terminology and terms. First ed, Industrial Management Organization, Tehran, Iran.
  26. Musavi, S.M., 2013. Design pattern of rural resilience pattern in drought conditions, a case study of agricultural activities in villages in Isfahan Province. Ph.D. Thesis. Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran. Iran.
  27. Nori, H.A. and Sepahvand, F., 2016. Resilience analysis of rural settlements against natural hazards with an emphasis on earthquakes (Case study: Shirvan district of Bojnourd). Rural Research Quarterly. 2, 272-285.
  28. Norozi, M. and Hayati, D., 2015. Structures affecting rural sustainable livelihoods from the viewpoint of farmers in Kermanshah Province. Iranian Journal of Agricultural Extensions and Education. 1, 127-144.
  29. Platts-Fowler, D. and Robinson, D., 2016. Community resilience: a policy tool for local government? Local Government Studies. 42(5), 762-784.
  30. Rafiean, M., Rezaei, M., Asgari, A. and Pahizkar, A., 2010. Conceptualization of resilience and its indicators in community-based disaster management (CBDM). The Journal of Spatial Planning. 4, 19- 42.
  31. Rahmanian, D., 2001. Coping with droughts without comprehensive planning is not possible. Mahab Ghods New Course. 11, 14-23.
  32. Rezaie, M., Saraee, M. and Bastamynia, A., 2016. Explain and analyze the concept of resilience and its indicators and frameworks in natural disasters. Quarterly Journal of Crisis Prevention and Management. 8, 32- 46.
  33. Roknoddin Eftekhari, A., Mousavi, S.M., Pourtaheri, M. and Farajzadeh-Asl, M., 2013. Analysis of the role of livelihoods in rescuing rural households in drought conditions. Rural Research. 3, 639-662.
  34. Speranza, C.I., Wiesmann, U. and Rist, S., 2014. An indicator framework for assessing livelihood resilience in the context social- ecological dynamics. Global Environmental Change. 28, 109- 119.
  35. Thulstrup, A.W., 2015. Livelihood resilience and adaptive capacity: Tracing changes in household access to capital in Central Vietnam. World Development. 74, 352-362.
  36. Zhou, H., Wan, J. and Jia, H., 2010. Resilience to natural hazards: a geographic perspective. Natural Hazards. 53(1), 21-41.