Mission Command: Retooling the Leadership Paradigm for Homeland Security Crisis Response? [open pdf - 1MB]
From the thesis abstract: "Homeland security leaders faced with managing a crisis event, such as a terrorist attack, will invariably be exposed to tremendous decision-making pressure. Typically, these leaders are working within the confines of hierarchically configured response organizations. Crisis response is complex, requiring flexibility and the collaboration of multiple homeland security response partners to be effective. Mission command and the tools used to communicate a leader's intent provide an alternative approach to hierarchical leadership norms. Decentralization of mission authority and promotion of self-initiative can increase the tempo of decision making and execution. The intent of this thesis is to examine the applicability of mission command for use in managing homeland security crisis response. Several perspectives are considered. First, the origins of mission command and the efforts by a military organization to implement this ethos are reviewed. Second, parallels between both the military and the homeland security response environments are examined. Finally, implementation challenges, implementation examples using the wildland fire experience, and opportunities for implementation within the homeland security enterprise are considered."
Naval Postgraduate School, Dudley Knox Library: http://www.nps.edu/Library/index.aspx