ABSTRACT

This chapter discusses the dynamics of post-political planning in Tacloban City, Philippines, that was hit by Typhoon Haiyan in 2013. After the typhoon caused enormous damage to the city and left thousands of casualties in its wake, the local government embarked on a post-disaster urban recovery plan framed within a post-political framework. The chapter first discusses how the planning process imposed a post-political condition anchored on technocratic planning, as well as the construction of climate change as an externalised threat to the city. The post-disaster recovery plan of the city is based on capitalist competitiveness and environmental sustainability whilst foreclosing possibilities of antagonistic politics from civil society. The chapter also argues that the post-political manifestation of engagement between the local state and civil society organisations in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan stems from two conditions in the Philippine setting: firstly, an institutional framework that privileges civil society cooperation with the state and, secondly, a long-standing distrust towards civil society organisations as fronts for radical political activities. But at the same time, the chapter finds that the social movement organising of disaster survivors affected by Typhoon Haiyan can be seen as a form of insurgent mobilisation that aims to open up a political moment rendering visible the actors and claims that have been hidden within the post-political condition.