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July 1, 2022

Computing a Displacement Distance Equivalent to Optimize Plans for Postdisaster Temporary Housing Projects

El-Anwar, Omar; Chen, Lei. (2013). Computing a Displacement Distance Equivalent to Optimize Plans for Postdisaster Temporary Housing Projects. Journal Of Construction Engineering And Management, 139(2), 174 – 184.

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Residence in temporary housing is a critical period for the social, economic, and psychological recovery of displaced families following disasters. Temporary housing locations define the displacement distance between families and their essential needs. The objective of this paper is to develop a novel methodology to capture the specific proximity needs and preferences of displaced families. This paper proposes a displacement distance equivalent as an objective metric to evaluate the performance of temporary housing locations in meeting the needs of displaced families. Moreover, the paper describes the development of an integer programming optimization model capable of optimizing temporary housing assignments to minimize total displacement distance equivalent while meeting budget constraints. The main contribution of this paper to the body of knowledge is in transforming the purpose of temporary housing programs from offering general accommodation to providing customized housing solutions tailored to the individual proximity needs of each household using the proposed displacement metric. In addition, the proposed optimization model enables decision makers to set budget constraints to ensure the economic feasibility of identified temporary housing solutions. DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)CO. 1943-7862.0000601. (C) 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Disasters; Emergency Management; Integer Programming; Social Sciences; Displaced Families; Customized Housing Solutions; Decision Makers; Displacement Metric; Budget Constraints; Integer Programming Optimization Model; Objective Metric; Temporary Housing Locations; Post-disaster Temporary Housing Projects; Displacement Distance Equivalent Computation; Multiobjective Optimization; Optimization; Temporary Housing; Disaster Recovery; Displacement Distance; Housing Sites