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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration CHAPTER THREE Guidelines for Community-Based Private–Public Collaboration Effective resilience-focused private–public collaboration will often span geographic and political jurisdictions, include multiple agencies and levels of government, and cross other social, economic, and cultural boundaries. Collaborators recognize that no person or entity has all the expertise, insight, information, influence, or resources to build community resilience. Likewise, there will be impediments to collaboration that need to be recognized and addressed, including cultural, interpersonal, political, financial, and technical challenges. There is the barrier of physical separation caused by time and distance that cannot be completely offset, even by the most sophisticated communication technology. In sum, collaborative efforts are often complex. An organizing structure is therefore necessary to understand how the various components of collaboration relate to one another (Briggs et al., 2009). This chapter offers practical suggestions for applying the conceptual framework provided in Chapter 2. Many different types of community actors mobilize to respond when disaster strikes. Postdisaster response networks are far larger and more complex than those envisioned in official disaster plans (NRC, 2006). For example, based on multiple data sources, Kapucu (2007) found that over 1,100 nonprofit organizations played some role in emergency response and postevent relief activities following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, in New York City. Included in that number were nonprofit organizations that formed specifically to address the needs of those affected by the attacks. Also using multiple sources, Bevc (2010) identified more than 600 organizations whose activities focused directly on emergency response tasks such as search and rescue, fire suppression, and assisting victims and emergency workers. These organizations were involved in extensive networks of interaction and collaboration that emerged and evolved over time. The mobilization of a broad spectrum of community organizations and sectors is thus a key factor enabling effective disaster response. Response activities typically involve a formal or informal network, characterized by collaboration rather than command and control, with entities joining response
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration networks to carry out activities that are deemed necessary, regardless of whether such activities are specified in plans. The committee cautions, however, that whatever role a collaborative network serves in the community, it should be consistent with and supportive of the legal authority of emergency management agencies. As described in Partnerships for Emergency Preparedness: Developing Partnerships (LLIS, 2006), many communities’ public-safety and private-sector entities have conducted planning and preparedness operations largely independent of one another. Few fully understand or appreciate the others’ roles in emergency prevention, preparedness, mitigation, response, and recovery. Public-safety agencies often underestimate the private sector’s interest and involvement in emergency-preparedness efforts. Private-sector groups overestimate the capabilities of government and fail to recognize the need for their own contributions to an incident response. In addition, the private sector often perceives cooperation with government agencies as risky because of the government’s role in regulating their industries, concern about the protection of proprietary information, and the potential of legal liability. It can be challenging to motivate private and public sectors to participate in resilience-focused collaboration that emphasizes a comprehensive management approach. How are organizations encouraged to plan for disaster mitigation and preparation, as well as response and recovery? How are organizations encouraged to do this collaboratively with others in their community? The committee describes engagement at the community level in the first major section of this chapter. In it, the importance of acknowledging local networks and network diversity are discussed, as are the importance of engaging needed expertise—either locally or further afield—and following evidence-based principles of emergency management. The second major section explores structure and process in resilience-related activities, including the importance of a coordinating function and multilevel relationships. The third major section of the chapter discusses practical application of the conceptual model discussed in Chapter 2. The final section of this chapter provides the committee’s overarching guidelines designed to address community-level private–public collaboration for enhancing disaster resilience. ENGAGING AT THE COMMUNITY LEVEL Just as there is no clear federal coordination or national strategy for climate adaptation (NRC, 2010a), there is no national strategy for building community disaster resilience. That 2010 NRC report on climate change concludes that there is a need for a national strategy for climate adaptation, and that the strategy would benefit from “a ‘bottom-up’ approach that builds on and supports existing efforts and experiences” at the state and local levels, including private–public collaboration. This report does not address all components of a national resilience strategy, but the committee recognizes that with or without a national strategy, there is a need for community-level resilience. Achieving resilience at the state or national levels begins with resilience-
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration enhancing efforts in local communities. Community efforts begin with individuals from any sector believing in and acting on a sense of personal responsibility to ensure community sustainability. Those individuals also convince others of similar need to act. Leadership and initiative can come from any sector. Local government and local business and civic organizations have unique knowledge of, access to, and communication with individual citizens throughout the community. Well-prepared individuals contribute to household and workplace resilience. Well-prepared households and businesses contribute to neighborhood, social, commercial, economic, and community resilience. Well-prepared communities place fewer demands on state and federal resources because they are better able to cope when disasters or other disruptions occur. A nation is resilient when it is made up of resilient communities. The notion that disaster resilience is fostered at the local community level is a cornerstone of many recent national preparedness efforts, including those of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) National Response Framework. It states in part that “an effective, unified national response requires layered, mutually supporting capabilities” (FEMA, 2008:4), and that “resilient communities begin with prepared individuals and depend on the leadership and engagement of local government, NGOs, and the private sector” (FEMA, 2008:5). The concept of a “tiered response,” a key element of the framework, places primary responsibility for hazard and disaster management at the local community level. Although it indicates that response activities must be flexible and scalable, the framework contains the directive that “incidents must be managed at the lowest possible jurisdictional level and supported by additional capabilities when needed” and states further that “incidents begin and end locally, and most are wholly managed at the local level” (FEMA, 2008:10). It can even be hypothesized, as Mileti (1999) did, that an indicator of community disaster resilience is the ability of a local community to cope with events without relying excessively on outside resources. Conversely, as seen during the January 2010 Haiti earthquake, communities and societies that lack disaster resilience may depend almost exclusively on external aid. However, community and extracommunity preparedness efforts aid and reinforce household, business, and individual preparedness. Community resilience-enhancing interventions can thus be used at any level of analysis—individuals, households, neighborhoods and community associations, individual businesses and groups of businesses, individual nonprofit organizations and networks of nonprofit organizations—with a key stipulation that such efforts be mutually reinforcing. The sections that follow discuss the strategic dimensions of a national framework for enhancing disaster resilience with an emphasis on local-level strategies. The committee was asked to focus on community-level private–public collaboration, and it did, but the committee would be remiss to ignore the sociopolitical environment that is conducive to such collaboration. Discussions of strategy are based on what has been learned not only in the fields of emergency management and disaster-loss reduction but in other fields such as
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration public health. The committee also draws on knowledge on topics such as citizen mobilization, collective action, and community organizing. Recognize the Significance of Local Networks Chapter 1 defined a community as a group of people with a common interest, on the basis of the definition developed by Etienne Wenger (1998). The concept of community has many dimensions, and communities are perhaps best understood as consisting of networks of relationships of various types on various scales. Networks exist at many levels within and across myriad sectors of society, including interpersonal, neighborhood, organizational, private industry, civic, and governmental. Networks may be based on informal or formal ties or on a mixture of the two. They may be organized according to geography, government or economic functions, or interests of various kinds. Communities in the United States include a wide array of vibrant and dynamic networks, and even the most impoverished and seemingly deprived communities and subsets of communities include such networks. U.S. society is widely understood to contain a rich array of religious institutions, voluntary associations, nonprofits, coalitions, interest groups, and alliances of other kinds. Efforts to mobilize individuals and groups are most efficient and successful when begun through existing networks and institutions using multiple mechanisms. People are not motivated to work toward a goal as isolated individuals; rather, they participate in collective efforts through the groups and institutions in which they normally participate. In the U.S. civil rights movement, for example, black churches and church-related networks, such as the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, provided a means of connecting individuals to the movement (Morris, 1984). Mass-media–based information campaigns, such the DHS Web portal,1 may succeed in bringing issues to the attention of individuals but might not be effective in motivating collective action. An individual business owner may understand that preparing for disasters is important but might not act on that understanding unless messages and encouragement come through the local chamber of commerce or other business-oriented association. That was the experience of the Disaster Resistant Business Toolkit (DRB Toolkit)2 Workgroup that brought together private- and public-sector experts in business continuity and emergency management. Through existing relationships, the workgroup developed and launched disaster planning software to assist small businesses in the United States with continuity planning to reduce their vulnerability to all hazards. The DRB Toolkit Workgroup understood the interconnectedness of a community (Bullock et al., 2009). All-inclusive networks can be created by linking and optimizing existing professional, 1 Available at www.ready.gov/ (accessed July 1, 2010). 2 See www.DRBToolkit.org/ (accessed July 30, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration religious, service, social, economic, and other networks. Community stakeholders collaborating in resilience-enhancing strategies might therefore consider how to reach individuals and groups through the organizations to which they belong. It is important to build on the work and achievements of local networks devoted specifically to emergency management and homeland security, such as local disaster-preparedness networks and the DHS Urban Areas Security Initiative programs that can provide a firm basis for more inclusive and comprehensive resilience-enhancing efforts. However, it is equally important for resilience-enhancing efforts to be directed toward and occur through the wide array of local entities, associations, and alliances that represent the full fabric of the community. One example of a network of community-based organizations is the Kentucky Outreach and Information Network (KOIN),3 established to communicate with hard-to-reach populations in an emergency. KOIN is a network of local resources that provides information to groups such as non-English speakers and the deaf, and its members serve as liaisons between those people and emergency responders. Collaboration with local agencies can increase the effectiveness of collaboration, not only because of increased interaction with the emergency management community, but because of the relationships of local organizations with members of the community. Local police and fire departments, for example, have relationships with citizen groups such as neighborhood crime watch groups, Community Emergency Response Teams,4 or Citizens of Oakland Respond to Emergencies (CORE) in Oakland, California.5 Engaging with groups such as local Boys and Girls Clubs,6 for example, or groups representing minorities, or special needs groups in a community may help reach individuals who are otherwise difficult to reach. Most groups will have their own trusted means of communication, and people respond best to information that comes from people they know and trust and with whom they interact regularly. That is the case regardless of the type of information conveyed, as was demonstrated through examples in the summary of a National Research Council workshop on social-network analysis for enhancing community resilience (Magsino, 2009). As noted in the earlier National Research Council report on the human dimensions of hazards and disasters (NRC, 2006), horizontal ties both elicit and increase trust. Recognize Network Diversity Participants of the committee’s information-gathering workshop noted the tendency of government to focus on “generic” populations—for example middle-class, educated suburban dwellers—that may not represent the diversity in the community or its networks. 3 See chfs.ky.gov/dph/epi/preparedness/KOIN.htm (accessed September 15, 2010). 4 See www.citizencorps.gov/cert/ (accessed September 15, 2010). 5 See www.oaklandnet.com/fire/core/about.html (accessed September 15, 2010). 6 See www.bgca.org/Pages/index.aspx (accessed September 15, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration Engaging all sectors, community members, and existing networks increases the ability to identify community needs and leverage community resources. However, different communication mechanisms may be needed to communicate collaborative goals, functions, and benefits for different constituencies. Such tools may include conceptual models, narrative descriptions, and business prospectuses. In some cases, the mechanisms may need to be provided in different languages. Successful use of existing networks includes recognition that not only do communities consist of numerous diverse networks, but that networks that include some community members by definition exclude others. Church membership, for example, is an important community tie for many people, but such networks are themselves diverse, and communities contain many people who are not church goers or affiliated with any religious institution. In most communities, there are well-established fraternal associations, but they are also diverse. Chambers of commerce and such institutions as the United Way serve as focal points for many—not all—local businesses and nonprofits, respectively. Similarly, many—not all—communities have a wide diversity of neighborhood and homeowners associations. There are also work-based and school-based networks. In some communities, a major employer provides a focal point for community activities. In our culturally diverse society, many networks center on ethnic identities, immigration histories, and minority community institutions. Ethnic enclaves have their own distinctive forms of social organization, which may not be well understood by the larger majority community. The committee calls attention to other types of organizations, those that emerge in response to crisis. Participants of the committee’s information-gathering workshop recognized that it is often through informal or unofficial channels that food, shelter, hygiene, and other support services are first offered immediately following a disaster (NRC, 2010b). Often groups, called “problem solving networks” by Milward and Provan (2006), emerge specifically to determine a way to quickly resolve the crisis and can result in long-lived and effective networks. Groups that arise in response to crisis are often not recognized or used effectively by emergency management officials. This report emphasizes the importance of preparation prior to a crisis and does not focus on groups that arise as a result of crisis. However, regular assessment of networks within a community may help identify the conditions under which such groups emerge. Mothers Against Drunk Driving,7 for example, arose in response to tragic events in individual families, but is now a national nonprofit organization that promotes change in social behavior and in public policy. Understanding how such groups emerge may help communities understand where they may emerge, as well as how they may be used during crisis. Private–public collaboration—whether directed at enhancing a community’s quality of life, solving community problems, or, in this case, aiding communities in becoming disaster- 7 See www.madd.org/About-Us/About-Us/Mission-Statement.aspx (accessed September 3, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration resilient—will be most successful when it includes an early comprehensive assessment of diverse community network assets. Engage Expertise at Local and Broader Scales Different types of expertise are required for the development and maintenance of resilience-focused private–public collaboration. It is necessary for partners in such efforts to understand community risks, hazards, and vulnerabilities. Different kinds of information are required to address those needs, including hazard assessments, information on the impacts of past disasters, and information on the vulnerability of population groupings, the built environment, and ecosystems. Community stakeholders require a general understanding of such issues as how much protection current building codes offer against damage, the likely consequences of previous land-use decisions, and the likely social and economic impacts of both probable and worst-case disaster events. Those kinds of information can come from multiple sources, including loss-estimation studies that use HAZUS,8 HAZUS-MH, the Social Vulnerability Index (SOVI),9 census data, community disaster scenarios, and individuals and organizations including university researchers, professional engineers and engineering societies, building-code officials, urban planners, and state agencies. Resilience initiatives may also draw on the knowledge of community-based experts, such as community organizers, elected and appointed officials, leaders in community-based nonprofit organizations and businesses, and long-term community residents. Such information lends nuance and meaning to more “scientific” hazard and vulnerability data and increases the probability that resilience-enhancing private–public collaboration will be successful. With support from FEMA, the National Science Foundation–sponsored Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research developed a set of guidelines for seismic-safety advocacy strategies (Alesch et al., 2004). The report contains practical guidance on a variety of topics, including how to use scientific expertise in community loss-reduction campaigns, risk communication, community mobilization, and partnership building. Although the report is focused on earthquake safety, its lessons are easily transferable to an all-hazards context. Individual community stakeholders are not all expected to be able to identify what information is available or to determine what actions are translatable or scalable to their own circumstances. Private–public collaboration therefore benefits greatly from engaging those that have necessary expertise—for example, from local institutions of higher learning—as community stakeholders. 8 See www.fema.gov/plan/prevent/hazus/ (accessed July 1, 2010). 9 See webra.cas.sc.edu/hvri/products/sovi.aspx (accessed July 1, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration Follow Evidence-Based Principles of Community Engagement Community engagement is a well-recognized approach to community problem solving that has been used in such fields as health care and research, law enforcement, and planning for pandemic influenza and homeland security threats (Patterson et al., 2010; Fleischman, 2007; NRC, 2006; Lasker et al., 2003). Numerous resources exist for those desiring to engage the full fabric of the community in community activities. The Higher Education Network for Community Engagement is made up of community colleges, colleges, and universities that provide community-engagement guidance.10 Numerous online resources contain step-by-step guidelines on effective community-engagement processes. Such organizations as the Center for Advances in Public Engagement11 provide an array of materials that can inform local resilience-enhancing efforts, including what the center terms “core principles of community engagement” (Kadlec and Friedman, 2008). The IBM Center for the Business of Government12 offers an online Collaboration Series that includes guidance for public managers involved with citizen engagement (Lukensmeyer and Torres, 2006). A report on the promises and challenges of neighborhood-level democracy, based on a meeting organized by Grassroots Grantmakers and the Deliberative Democracy Consortium, explores creative ways for local governments to engage citizens in public decision making and problem solving (Leighninger, 2009). New initiatives also seek to apply concepts of community engagement originally developed in the fields of health and public health to disaster preparedness. For example, the National Resource Center on Advancing Emergency Preparedness for Culturally Diverse Communities is a project of the Drexel University School of Public Health Center for Health Equality that seeks to link health-based and disaster-loss reduction engagement strategies.13 In 1995, the Centers for Disease Control and Disease Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry established a Committee for Community Engagement, which reviewed relevant research and synthesized findings in a report titled Principles of Community Engagement (CDC-ATSDR, 1997). The recommendations in that report are applicable to all types of community-based improvement efforts, including resilience initiatives, and are summarized in Box 3.1. 10 See www.henceonline.org/ (accessed June 30, 2010). 11 See www.publicagenda.org/cape (accessed June 30, 2010). 12 See www.businessofgovernment.org (accessed August 31, 2010). 13 See www.diversitypreparedness.org/ (accessed June 30, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration BOX 3.1 Principles of Community Engagement as Recommended by the CDC-ATSDR Committee on Community Engagement The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention established the Committee for Community Engagement in 1995 to consider the literature and practical experience gained by those who were engaging people and organizations in communities around the nation and to provide public-health professionals and community leaders with scientific information and practical guidelines to aid in decision making and action on issues associated with health promotion, health protection, and disease prevention. The community engagement strategies provide practical guidance for those wishing to engage in resilience-focused private–public collaboration. The following is a summary of strategies drawn directly from that committee’s report (CDC-ATSDR, 1997). Before Beginning a Community Engagement Effort Be clear about the purposes or goals of the engagement effort, and the populations and communities you want to engage. Become knowledgeable about the community in terms of its economic conditions, political structures, norms and values, demographic trends, history, and experience with engagement efforts. Learn about the community’s perceptions of those initiating the engagement activities. For Engagement to Occur Go into the community, establish relationships, build trust, work with the formal and informal leadership, and seek commitment from community organizations and leaders to create processes for mobilizing the community. Remember and accept that community self-determination is the responsibility and right of all people who comprise a community. No external entity should assume it can bestow on a community the power to act in its own self-interest. For Engagement to Succeed [Partner] with the community … to create change and improve health [and resilience]. All aspects of community engagement must recognize and respect community diversity. Awareness of the various cultures of a community and other factors of diversity must be paramount in designing and implementing community engagement approaches. Community engagement can only be sustained by identifying and mobilizing community assets, and by developing capacities and resources for community health decisions and action. An engaging organization or individual change agent must be prepared to release control of actions or interventions to the community, and be flexible enough to meet the changing needs of the community. Community collaboration requires long-term commitment by the engaging organization and its partners. SOURCE: CDC-ATSDR (1997).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration STRUCTURE AND PROCESS IN RESILIENCE-RELATED ACTIVITIES Collaboration to achieve disaster resilience requires considerable attention to organizational design and structure. Insufficient attention to organization is likely to result in short-lived partnerships that fail to achieve their objectives. Inappropriate forms of organization can lead to participant dissatisfaction and conflict among stakeholders. Accordingly, the committee gathered research-based evidence on appropriate forms of organization for collaborative networks and collected the views of experts regarding best practices. The committee’s conceptual model for resilience-focused private–public collaboration (Figure 2.1) can serve as a visual reminder of the connections between various collaborative elements and desired outcomes. Referring to the conceptual model while planning and mobilizing a collaborative network can assist organizers in decision making and assessment of activities. The Importance of a Coordinating Function The University of Delaware Disaster Research Center Project Impact assessment studies emphasized the importance of local Project Impact coordinators, whose jobs consisted of ensuring that communities were progressing in collaboration, partnership building, and other project goals. The findings suggest that regardless of how collaborative activities are organized, it is necessary to devote resources specifically for collaboration management. Put another way, it appears to be insufficient to argue for the importance of collaboration without also investing in individuals or groups that are charged with the responsibility of ensuring that collaboration is taking place. The experience of dedicated staff ultimately reduces jurisdictional confusion and wrangling after a disaster, allows more efficient pooling of resources, and promotes faster recovery. It is relatively easy to persuade potential collaborators to join umbrella organizations or to be signatories to disaster plans. However, given the infrequency of serious disasters in any given community, it is far more challenging to engage their active participation in resilience efforts on an ongoing basis. A strong collaborative network with dedicated staff will help keep loss reduction and resilience a community priority as an integral part of normal community functioning. Some may argue that a coordinating function is not consistent with the committee’s suggestion that decision making remain decentralized. The committee would counter that decentralized decision making is possible within an organized structure. Our system of governance in this country is an example. Rules and guidelines exist to direct the structure, but the structure does not direct the outcomes of decision-making processes. As long as there is consensus regarding rules of collaboration and the actions of a coordinating person or body, and as long as those rules are regularly evaluated for their relevance, decentralized decision making is possible.
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration Communities may decide that resources are too scarce to support a dedicated coordinator; it is essential that they consider the greater cost of not having a coordinator and the long-term benefits a coordinator is likely to provide. Horizontal and Vertical Ties Because enhancing disaster resilience is a nationwide goal, it is most useful to consider collaborative activities in the context of individual efforts nationwide. That does not imply that collaborative efforts should be driven by federal regulations and requirements or that collaboration should be approached in a uniform fashion in communities around the country. As with any program designed to address national problems, successful solutions developed to improve disaster resilience reflect the diversity of local communities around the nation and are consistent with the structure of the U.S. intergovernment system. Because of the importance of local-level buy-in to sustain the effort, it can be counterproductive for higher organizational levels in both the private and public sectors to provide more than technical, logistical, or financial support unless requested and coordinated with local leadership. Chapter 2 discussed the importance of developing strong horizontal or intracommunity networks for disaster resilience. The conceptual model (Figure 2.1) includes strategizing for including the full fabric of the community. It is appropriate that horizontal networks receive substantial emphasis, but ideally resilience-enhancing programs will include a productive mix of horizontal and vertical collaboration and coordination. In its 2006 report Facing Hazards and Disasters: Understanding Human Dimensions, the National Research Council linked disaster resilience to the concept of social capital and emphasized the importance of both horizontal integration (within the community) and vertical integration (across different scales) among entities participating in loss-reduction activities. Regarding the importance of strong horizontal ties, the report (NRC, 2006: 231) noted that a community with a high degree of horizontal integration (i.e., strong social capital) has an active civic engagement program that fosters more tightly knit social networks among citizens and local organizations. Stronger networks provide a greater opportunity for creating interpersonal trust. Such a community can be a viable, locally based problem-solving entity. Its organizations and individuals not only have an interest in solving public problems, but also tend to have frequent and sustained interaction, believe in one another, and work together to build consensus and act collectively. Thus, local populations have the opportunity to define and communicate their needs, mediate disagreements, and participate in local organizational decision making. Intracommunity ties thus constitute the fundamental building blocks of a disaster-resilient society. However, there is also the need to link communities vertically to other external entities. External ties—for example, among local communities and state and federal
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration Institutionalize Collaboration by Developing an Organizational and Operational Framework Collaboration itself will be most effective if it is neutral—that is, nonpartisan, not-for-profit, and focused on providing benefit to the community at large (BENS, 2009). According to BENS, the legal, regulatory, and cultural barriers to collaboration often discourage long-term engagement by businesses when collaboration is government-funded and proscribed. The committee extends this observation to all organizations—neutral and nonpartisan collaboration is more conducive to trust building and creates an environment in which consensus can be built on common operating principles. The ideal organizing structure will reflect that neutrality—whether it is grounded in an existing community organization or incorporated as an independent 501(c)(3) organization—and will include the relationships necessary to coordinate preparedness efforts. A nonpartisan structure is less likely to exclude potential collaborators because of ideological differences, and is more likely to survive changes in political administration. Collaboration organized by local governments can be effective—collaboration organized by the city of Seattle, Washington, being a notable example25—but the experience and observations of committee members leads the committee to conclude that relationships with the private sector are more easily formed and sustained when collaboration is not organized by a government agency, and that the organizational structure itself is likely to be more sustainable if not closely tied to a particular administration. Individual communities will need to decide which type of organizational structure would be most sustainable in their communities. The organizational and leadership structures can be devised by using models from other communities and drawing on research and best practices or with technical assistance provided by a facilitator or nonprofit organization. Organizational aspects will vary by community, but it is important to provide for governance and ownership by local stakeholders. BENS, MSU-CIP, and the LLIS series all recommend building collaboration, when possible, from the platform of an existing organization that has high credibility in the community (BENS, 2009; MSU, 2000; LLIS, 2006). For example, when invited by the governor of Iowa to explore feasibility of a partnership in Iowa, BENS went first to the Iowa Business Council, an organization that comprised the CEOs of the state’s top 20 private employers, the presidents of three public universities, and the Iowa Bankers Association. The Iowa Business Council provided institutional endorsement and credibility for the partnership and aided its growth and expansion throughout the state. The Safeguard Iowa Partnership 25 For example, the city of Seattle and King County, Washington, have formed a Vulnerable Populations Action Team (VPAT) that works with community-based organizations focusing on public health preparedness needs for their community members with special needs during times of disaster. See www.kingcounty.gov/healthservices/health/preparedness/VPAT/about.aspx (accessed September 15, 2010). Seattle has other private–public partnerships related to disaster preparedness and community disaster resilience. See www.cityofseattle.net/emergency/ (accessed September 15, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration BOX 3.2 Illustrative Collaborative Model Perhaps the best example of private–public collaboration that has moved to an advanced stage is the Safeguard Iowa Partnership (SIP). Originally facilitated by BENS, SIP was formally launched on January 29, 2007, with representatives of major Iowa businesses, the Iowa Business Council, and several state agencies. It is a voluntary coalition of Iowa’s private and public-sector leaders, who share a commitment to strengthening the capacity of the state to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters. SIP partners work to reduce the impact of emergencies on their communities by pledging resources and offering support services. SIP undertakes activities in five categories: resources and preparedness, communication and coordination, education and exercises, partnership development and outreach, and partnership marketing and public awareness. SIP’s board of directors developed the five initiatives during a strategic planning session in 2008. The initiatives benefit SIP members, state government agencies, and the public. SIP remains dedicated to increasing the participation of the private sector in its programs and therefore increasing the number and variety of assets available to lend to preparedness and response operations across Iowa. The partnership has developed a program to promote the establishment of organizational chapters within regions, counties, and cities. Chapters network between public and private-sector partners based in a given area with location-specific initiatives and information. SIP also pursues relationships actively with public-sector agencies, as evidenced by SIP’s business seat in the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) and its involvement with the Iowa Department of Health and the Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management First Responders Advisory Committee. SIP has been tested by disaster and its efficacy has been validated. During summer 2008, Iowa experienced a series of severe storms that produced several tornadoes and historic flooding. Over a four-week period, flood waters moved across Iowa and required the state to undertake extensive preparedness, response, and recovery operations. Overall, the 2008 summer storms resulted in 17 deaths, forced the evacuation of about 38,000 Iowans, and affected over 21,000 housing units. During the 2008 summer storms, SIP helped to bridge the gap between Iowa’s public and private sectors. SIP partners spent hundreds of hours during the 2008 summer storms contributing to Iowa’s emergency response and recovery process, including assistance with general resource procurement at the SEOC. SOURCE: www.LLIS.gov (accessed July 1, 2010). was born as an initiative of the Iowa Business Council with BENS serving as a neutral facilitator.26 It later incorporated as an independent 501(c)(3) organization. Stakeholders agreed on an operational framework that was institutionalized, and the Safeguard Iowa Partnership quickly grew—and was tested by disaster. (See Box 3.2 for a more detailed description of the partnership effort.) 26 See www.safeguardiowa.org/ (accessed June 30, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration The Seattle Project Impact effort was launched through the efforts of the Seattle Office of Emergency Management with the assistance of the Contingency Planners and Recovery Managers Group, consultants to the private and public sectors on issues related to emergency management preparedness and planning. Successful Seattle Project Impact programs were exported to surrounding jurisdictions and were all managed for years under the Seattle Project Impact operational framework. Seattle Project Impact supported the development of a separate but partnering nonprofit, the DRB Toolkit Workgroup,27 who in turn partnered with Washington state communities to provide their tools to increase business disaster preparedness (Bullock et al., 2009). Civic-minded organizations with executive-level volunteers are important in a partnership to provide both governance and operating support. Several partnership models suggest that collaboration can be governed and supported by multiple “teams”: a high-level advisory council comprising CEOs and the directors of key state or local agencies to set strategic direction and an operating council that includes operations-level managers from business, civic organizations, and NGOs charged with program implementation. Sustaining commitment from a broad cross-section of members is critical for the success of a partnership. Creating an organizational or governing structure with the conceptual model for resilience-focused private–public collaboration (Figure 2.1) in mind will help to ensure widespread acceptance as well as the efficacy and sustainability of a collaborative structure. Identify Collective Resources and Capabilities that Mitigate Disaster Impact As an early tool to build cohesiveness and a common sense of purpose, many organizations established to facilitate partnership development recommend that participants identify what their respective organizations can bring to their community in an emergency. The process is invariably an “eye opener” as it creates new understanding and trust among participants and lays the foundation from which to build new capability and resilience. Participants who recognize the availability of resources feel greater commitment to the process of collaboration when they recognize how sharing resources could benefit them. This inventory process can also provide early benefits by cataloging and coordinating identified resources in a systematic way. The Infrastructure Security Partnership28 published a guide to building regional resilience that recommends a series of questions and steps that facilitate stronger resilience-focused collaboration among public and private stakeholders (TISP, 2006). Collaboration can also serve as a means of forward thinking in the community. Through collaboration, for example, a community may develop a central community foundation to 27 See www.drbtoolkit.org/ (accessed September 28, 2010). 28 See www.tisp.org/ (accessed June 30, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration serve as a repository for donated assistance funds for rapid distribution into the community when disaster strikes. Similarly, collaboration could result in initiatives that tie short-term benefits, such as improved bond ratings and community services, to actions that enhance longer-term preparedness and resilience. Focus on Disaster Resilience, and Explore Community Resilience Whether building collaboration from existing community organizations or beginning from scratch, one of the most important steps is to identify and agree on specific challenges, threats, or gaps in the community’s disaster preparedness and resilience-building efforts that the new collaborative effort can address. It is important for those engaged in collaboration to share a commitment to the greater goal—the continuity of the community—as opposed to pursuing only parochial interests or self-interest. It is imperative to identify common issues related to emergency preparedness, for example, but it is also essential for collaborators to identify how emergency preparedness is part of a broader community-building effort. Such an effort was made in Arlington County, Virginia, following the attack on the Pentagon, located in that county, on September 11, 2001. The attack itself gave urgency to the need for resilience planning in the community, and community engagement followed because all sectors shared a similar vision for community resilience. A community most likely to survive disaster, according to Ron Carlee, Arlington County’s manager until 2010, is one that actively commits to social equity and inclusion and creates a vision to which all its residents and institutions can relate (NRC, 2010b). Develop Feasible and Measurable Objectives Programmatically and financially sustainable collaboration depends on members’ adoption of annual plans with well-defined, feasible, and measurable objectives; that exercise new capabilities; that deliver return on investment to all partners; and that manage growth and expectations. Examples of measurable annual program objectives include: The creation of a registry identifying private-sector resources and capabilities resident in the community—and points of contact for those resources—that could be mobilized in a disaster (the registry is a tangible product that increases local capacity and tangibly demonstrates the value of working together); The annual number of businesses and nongovernment organizations that participate in joint table-top or live exercises with government partners; A target number of private employers that use the collaborative partnership to strengthen disaster preparedness for their organizations and their employees;
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration An annual increase—for example, by 10 percent—in the number of active participants and supporters; and Achieving financial and programmatic sustainability through a combination of public and private contributions and in-kind donations adequate to support at least one coordinator/staff. Committee members have observed how many homeland security partnerships produce recommendations and plans and declare victory without delivering tangible results. Successful collaboration includes exercises to test and improve new capability. The results of these tests are tangible, measurable outcomes. Additionally, these actions enable capabilities to be perceived real assets, and exercising them on a continuing basis for many initiatives raises awareness, builds strong relationships, and prepares collaborators for any disaster. It is, however, difficult to know how some measures correlate with long-term benefits. Even so, allowing every collaborator and members of the community to perceive and measure value in collaboration provides incentives for continued participation. The challenges associated with choosing metrics are discussed in Chapter 4 and the research needs in this area are described in Chapter 5. Build Capacity An important role of disaster resilience-focused collaboration is to educate the community on community readiness. Effective capacity building will help ensure that critical services are available to the broader community during crises. Collaborative public-education initiatives and campaigns may include actions aimed at crisis mitigation, with end-result goals of building trust between local government and other support organizations, reducing risk, and shortening recovery time after extreme events. Capacity-building programs will need to include education and training about community resilience and its inextricable link with services provided by NGOs, FBOs, and other community organizations that often serve as the unofficial first responders to a disaster. Collaborative education efforts could assist organizations in establishing training programs for employees and members that increase the understanding of personal and organizational roles in disaster mitigation, preparation, response, and recovery. Collaborate with Educational Institutions Collaborating with local educational institutions increases access to local resources and capabilities. University scientists and technical experts may develop the fundamentals of a risk-education campaign on the basis of available research, elements of which can be tailored for elected officials, business leaders, and the broader community. Communication
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration and education experts can be similarly tapped. Community colleges have many resources to offer especially given that 80 percent of the nation’s first responders are credentialed at such institutions, according to the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC, 2006). Students in institutions of higher learning, including trade schools, can be enlisted to support resilience-building efforts and public outreach. At the same time, educational institutions can be encouraged to make business continuity and resilience education essential components of undergraduate education for economics and business majors, and to incorporate community resilience into the curricula of public policy and engineering disciplines. Collaborating with K-12 educational institutions can build on existing momentum for resilience-building activities within a community, for example, in the case of the Great California ShakeOut29 drills. ShakeOut drills are being incorporated into school programs to fulfill annual earthquake drill requirements. Doing so could steer the next generation of leaders in all sectors to expect resilience-building to be a vital part of community economic, social, and environmental well-being. Partnering with K-12 educational institutions can help build capacity in a community’s youngest members and their families.30 Rapid societal change and the resulting changes in community vulnerability suggest a need for comprehensive, continuing analysis, assessment, and research. The committee’s conceptual model for resilience-focused collaboration (Figure 2.1) highlights the need for regular assessment of the community and of collaboration itself to ensure that goals and activities remain relevant. Although the committee understands that not every community will be able to do so, incorporating research directly into collaborative efforts will benefit collaboration and funders of collaboration by informing methods and metrics used. The assessment of the benefits of collaboration and of the direct and indirect costs of investing in collaboration could be better understood, and knowledge gained applied to other collaborative efforts. Decision making would be improved through direct input of research data. Incorporating random trial metrics in policy experiments by economists have shown some positive outcomes (e.g., Banerjee and Duflo, 2010; Banerjee et al., 2010). Positive outcomes have also been suggested through participatory research in the public health arena. The University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health, and PolicyLink,31 a national economic and social equity research and action institute, considered 10 case studies that reflect numerous public health issues in different locations. Their focus was on promoting public policy related to health through community-based participatory research. Studies included diesel bus pollution and its health consequences (Northern Manhattan, New 29 See www.ShakeOut.org/ (accessed July 30, 2010). 30 In California, a statewide earthquake preparedness exercise organized by the Earthquake County Alliance received the support of numerous county school superintendants who embraced the themes of the event and encouraged schools in their districts to engage students, families, local businesses, and community groups. Children were taught to secure their spaces in preparation for an earthquake, and taught how to be safe in the event of an earthquake. Resources were made available through schools for families and local organizations. See www.shakeout.org/schools/ (accessed August 24, 2010). 31 See www.policylink.org/site/c.lkIXLbMNJrE/b.5136441/k.BD4A/Home.htm (accessed September 13, 2010).
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration York), environmental injustice in industrialized hog production (rural North Carolina), and lead exposure among children (Tar Creek, Oklahoma). The analysis highlighted sample policy and related outcomes that suggest the substantial role of partnerships and presented success factors and challenges faced across sites (Minkler et al., 2008). Encourage Flexibility in Resource Administration Whether support is given or received at the national or local levels, the ability to provide or use resources in a timely manner will be seriously hampered if too many conditions are tied to their use. Participants in the committee’s workshop (NRC, 2010b) indicated that administering grants can be as time consuming as the activities they are intended to support. Some requirements were considered counterproductive. Requiring local matching funds as a condition of receiving resources, for example, can be prohibitive for rural or other communities in desperate need of support. It is essential to consider effective and flexible administration when providing grants and other funding support to allow creativity and the most effective use of resources. It is also important that support is provided with the understanding that collaboration of the type described in this report needs long-term nurturing and may yield few short-term quantifiable outcomes. Funds provided without proper consideration of long-term benefits might actually create an environment of less productivity. Funding and resources provided for resilience-focused collaborative efforts will have greater impact if they provide incentives for groups to collaborate rather than encourage competition for limited funding. Funding mechanisms that encourage competition for grants, such as that incorporated by the DHS Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI), focus on short-term results and can be biased toward certain communities. The committee finds that such programs may actually create competition that is unproductive in the long term in order to realize short-lived benefits. Further, funds directed to specific communities or outcomes may ignore the greater good done through collaboration elsewhere. More inclusive funding programs that are less targeted to specific agencies or outcomes may be more beneficial to communities in the long term. CREATING AN ENVIRONMENT FOR CHANGE Community resilience is more than the ability to conduct disaster response, and private–public sector collaboration is an optimal means of generating community resilience. In preparing this report, the committee faced a daunting challenge: to identify specific aspects of private–public sector collaboration most crucial for building community disaster resilience in a broader context. Box 3.3 provides a concise and overarching summary of the guidelines provided in this report, offering guidance on how the sociopolitical environment might
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration BOX 3.3 Overarching Guidelines The committee was tasked with developing a set of guidelines for private-sector engagement in enhancing community disaster resilience, but finds that its overarching guidelines are applicable to all sectors. The guidelines were designed to address community-level private–public collaboration for enhancing disaster resilience, but they will also apply to collaboration—or those wishing to support collaboration—at any level. These guidelines can be used in concert with the committee’s conceptual model for resilience-focused private–public sector collaboration (Figure 2.1), which shows the relationship between collaborative elements and outcomes. Keeping in mind how different elements of collaboration are related may facilitate more successful application of the guidelines. Pursue community-level private–public sector collaboration as a fundamental component of community resilience in general and disaster resilience in particular. Resilience-focused private–public collaboration ideally will: Integrate with broader capacity-building efforts within the community and include all community actors. Emphasize principles of comprehensive emergency management allowing preparation for all hazards and all phases of the disaster cycle to drive goals and activities. Function as a system of horizontal networks at the community level, coordinating with higher government and organizational levels. Develop flexible, evolving entities and establish processes to set goals, conduct continuing self-assessment, meet new challenges, and ensure sustainability. Institutionalize as a neutral, nonpartisan entity with dedicated staff. Build capacity through communication and training programs for those engaged in private–public collaboration and for the broader community. Resilience-focused private–public collaboration ideally will: Incorporate capacity building into collaboration from the onset. Target educational campaigns toward crisis mitigation with goals of community readiness, continuity planning, trust building, risk reduction, and shortened recovery time. Encourage all organizations in the private and public sectors to commit to organizational resilience through business-continuity measures. Partner with educational institutions in developing educational campaigns and disseminating information. Institutionalize the practice of embedding research into resilience-focused private–public sector collaboration by building research directly into existing and future collaborative efforts. Respect well-informed, locally determined all-hazards preparedness and resilience priorities. Develop funding and resource allocation strategies that are flexible in administration.
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration foster community-level partnership building more effectively. Although the guidelines presented address resilience-focused private–public collaboration at the community level, they are applicable to collaboration at any level. The private sector can build capacity, for example, by educating local elected officials about the benefits of participation in and support of community cross-sector partnerships and collaboration that encourage anticipatory risk reduction. It can combine the power of for-profit and nonprofit organizations to influence legislation and policy that support resilience-focused disaster mitigation and business continuity planning at the local, state, and federal levels. At the same time, the private sector, including NGOs and FBOs, can commit to internal organizational resilience through business-continuity measures, and encourage preparedness for employees and their families through education and training, activities, and incentives. The public sector is typically regarded as a leader in providing disaster response and recovery aid. It is essential, then, that the public sector promote activities that increase knowledge about resilience, resilience building, and the importance of private–public collaboration among community members. Government employees may be trained to promote resilience in their own lives and to understand their roles in the continuity of their organizations during and following a disaster. Federal partners, like community-level counterparts, could learn from unsuccessful efforts to develop strategies for mainstreaming collaboration in existing programs. Training and learning experiences aimed at developing the skill necessary for forming, sustaining, and institutionalizing private–public collaboration could be built on such lessons learned. Federal activities could include producing training materials for disaster personnel, placing a greater emphasis on partnership-building skills in programs offered by the Emergency Management Institute, funding workshops and train-the-trainer experiences, sponsoring the development of higher-education courses and textbooks on the topic, and providing learning experiences for members of the federal workforce. REFERENCES AACC (American Association of Community Colleges). 2006. First Responders: Community Colleges on the Front Line of Security. Washington, DC. Available at www.aacc.nche.edu/Publications/Reports/Documents/firstresponders.pdf (accessed September 16, 2010). Alesch, D., P. May, R. Olshansky, W. Petak, and K. Tierney. 2004. Promoting Seismic Safety: Guidance for Advocates. MCEER-04-SP02. Prepared for Federal Emergency Management Agency, Washington, DC. Buffalo, NY: The State University of New York at Buffalo. Banerjee, A. V. and E. Duflo. 2010. Giving Credit Where it is Due. Journal of Economic Perspectives. Paper available at econ-www.mit.edu/files/5416 (accessed August 4, 2010). Banerjee, A. V., E. Duflo, R. Glennerster, D. Kothari. 2010. Improving Immunization Coverage in Rural India: A Clustered Randomized Controlled Evaluation of Immunization Campaigns with and without Incentives. British Medical Journal 340: c2220.
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Building Community Disaster Resilience Through Private–Public Collaboration NRC (National Research Council). 2010a. Adapting to the Impacts of Climate Change. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. NRC (National Research Council). 2010b. Private–Public Sector Collaboration to Enhance Community Disaster Resilience: A Workshop Report. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. Patterson, O., F. Weil, and K. Patel. 2010. The role of community in disaster response: Conceptual models. Population Research and Policy Review 29(2): 127-141. TISP (The Infrastructure Security Partnership). 2006. Regional Disaster Resilience: A Guide for Developing an Action Plan. Reston, VA: American Society of Civil Engineers. Wenger, E. 1998. Community of Practice: Learning, Meaning and Identity. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.