The Department of Defense as Lead Federal Agency

Kathleen Gereski ABSTRACT: In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, many, including the president, have called for serious public discussion over whether the U.S. military should take over what has been historically a civilian governmental function of catastrophic incident response. The author addresses many of the complex legal and policy issues surrounding this shift in government

Strategies for Managing Volunteers during Incident Response: A Systems Approach

Lauren Fernandez, Joseph Barbera, and Johan Van Dorp ABSTRACT: During disasters, large numbers of people with no pre-planned role arrive at the scene and other areas of response activity to offer assistance. Spontaneous volunteers can be a significant resource, but are often ineffectively used and can actually hinder emergency activities by creating health, safety, and

Assessment of Public Health Infrastructure to Determine Public Health Preparedness

Anke Richter and Denise Santiago ABSTRACT: The Strategy for Homeland Security stresses the need for a robust public health component to respond to and recover from a range of emergencies. However, dire problems with the current public health manpower infrastructure have been reported for more than fifteen years and continue to be a problem. Bioterrorism

Notes from the Editor (Vol. II, Iss. 2)

Download the full issue. The July 2006 issue of Homeland Security Affairs offers articles about risk perception, domestic right wing extremist groups, social network analysis, and the impact of foreign policy on homeland security. It also features two articles that question conventional perspectives about the meaning of “lessons learned” and about the appropriate role of

Lessons We Don’t Learn: A Study of the Lessons of Disasters, Why We Repeat Them, and How We Can Learn Them

Amy Donahue and Robert Tuohy ABSTRACT: Emergency responders intervene before and during disasters to save lives and property. The uncertainty and infrequency of disasters make it hard for responders to validate that their response strategies will be effective, however. As a result, emergency response organizations use processes for identifying and disseminating lessons in hopes that

Social Capital: Dealing with Community Emergencies

Russell Dynes ABSTRACT: Terrorism produces what is conventionally called disaster. The locus of the response to disaster is the community, which as a unit has the social capital necessary to respond to disasters. The six forms of social capital referenced in this article are obligations and expectations, informational potential, norms and effective sanctions, authority relations,

Risk Perception and Terrorism: Applying the Psychometric Paradigm

Clinton M. Jenkin ABSTRACT: While expert risk analyses are based on calculations of probability and damage, public estimates of risk are more often based on qualitative factors. It is important to understand how the public, not just homeland security experts, perceive and react to the threat of terrorism. Risk perception research in general, and the

The National Military Strategic Plan for the War on Terrorism: An Assessment

Nadav Morag ABSTRACT: This article analyses the National Military Strategic Plan for the War on Terrorism issued on February 1, 2006 by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The article claims that the strategic plan is flawed for three reasons: 1) its goals are unclear and unrealistic, 2) policy implementation is primarily dependent

Social Network Analysis as an Approach to Combat Terrorism: Past, Present, and Future Research

Steve Ressler ABSTRACT: As the United States enters the twenty-first century, the biggest threat to the national security of the U.S. is terrorist organizations. These are primarily decentralized structures that consist of a series of loosely connected individuals forming around an ideology. The U.S is unable to combat this opponent with traditional, hierarchical approaches to