Haitian resiliency: A case study in intermittent infrastructure


  • Donald J. Patterson




In 2010 Haiti experienced a catastrophic earthquake that destroyed a substantial amount of infrastructure in the capital of Port-au-Prince. Limited national resources and widespread poverty have made the rebuilding slow and piecemeal. Five years later that infrastructure is still unevenly repaired and maintained. Nevertheless, the Haitian people have, by necessity, continued to adapt in order to take care of day-to-day activities. Based on a field visit, this paper describes some of the ways that infrastructure has re-emerged, gives examples of how people deal with the alternate infrastructures, how the infrastructures structure their lives and discusses what these lessons entail for how the developed world frames infrastructure in the face of similar challenges caused by global energy shortages.

Author Biography

Donald J. Patterson

Associate Professor in the Department of Informatics at the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences at the University of California, Irvine




How to Cite

Patterson, D. J. (2015). Haitian resiliency: A case study in intermittent infrastructure. First Monday, 20(8). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v20i8.6129