Writing about Events in Geography

Learn how to write a high quality case study. Whether you’re researching online or with textbooks and revision guides, youโ€™ll find a full breakdown on the important elements you need to include when writing about events in Geography. It is vital you research your topic as much as possible to show your understanding about the event. 

Weโ€™ll be looking at how to write about: what happened, why it happened, how people were affected and how people have tried to reduce the impact if it happens again. Covering how to write about the short term and long term impacts and writing about the success of the responses to the event. 

Keep reading to learn how to break down the daunting task of writing about events in Geography! 

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Writing About Events in Geography

When you are asked to provide a case study or about a particular event, you must be sure to include the right information! Here we have provided a full list of suggestions to help guide your writing. 

 What happened?

  • Basic facts about the event (type of event, time of day, magnitude, number of people affected/death toll, etc.)  
  • How frequently do these events occur in this location?

Why did it happen? 

  • Tectonic movement (name the tectonic plates, describe how they moved, state the magnitude of the event) 
  • Climate changes (what has changed in terms of temperature and precipitation? How long has the change been happening? How long will it last? Is it a one-off weather event or a permanent shift?) 
  • Human error (was the event caused by an individual or a group of people e.g. a forest fire caused by poorly managed campfires or an avalanche caused by climbers?)

Did anything make the impacts of this event worse?

  • Poor planning (building on a flood plain) 
  • Poor defences (lack of flood/coastal defences) 
  • Location (areas with poorer economies, climates or accessibility) 
  • Lack of warning (short time frame, lack of awareness)

How were people affected?

Short-term impacts (immediate impacts):

  • Death toll 
  • Injuries 
  • Disease
  • Houses damaged 
  • Businesses closed 
  • Infrastructure damaged (roads/railways/bridges/airports

Long-term impacts (problems that last longer than a few months):

  • Demographic changes 
  • Economic decline 
  • Displacement of people
  • Decline in tourism 
  • Change in birth rate

How was nature affected?

  • Changes in sea level 
  • Influx of freshwater 
  • Leaching of nutrients from the soil 
  • Pollution 
  • Loss of endangered species 
  • Loss in biodiversity 
  • Damage to primary forest

How did people respond to the event immediately after it happened? 

  • Search and rescue efforts
  • Emergency responders โ€“ who helped?
  • Military intervention
  • Provision of aid (shelter/food/water/evacuation)
  • Hospitals โ€“ were they equipped/overwhelmed?

What was done to recover from the event in the long-run?

  • How much did it cost to rebuild? 
  • How long did it take to rebuild houses?
  • Rebuilding infrastructure  
  • Relocating communities at risk 
  • Vaccinations 
  • Encouraging inward investment

How have they tried to reduce the impact if it happens again?

  • Investing in emergency services  
  • Implementing an emergency plan 
  • Setting up a warning system 
  • Installing monitoring teams 
  • Education 
  • Defences 
  • Strengthen buildings

How successful were the responses to the event?

  • Did they get the immediate emergency help there quickly enough? 
  • Was there enough help? 
  • What problems did they encounter? 
  • Did they rebuild the area to a high enough standard?  
  • Could/should anything have been done differently or better?

There you have it, a complete guide to Writing About Events in Geography. You can find more helpful Geography revision resources here

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