Roots of Community Resilience: A Comparative Analysis of Structural Change in Four Gulf Coast Hurricane Response Networks   [open html - 123KB]

"Despite the emphasis on resilience, disasters continue to challenge the response capacities of communities around the United States. These challenges are generated by the complexities and uncertainties present in the post-disaster environment. This article presents the findings of an exploratory investigation into the development and evolution of four disaster response networks that formed along the Gulf Coast, Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita in 2005, and Hurricane Gustav and Hurricane Ike in 2008. Using data collected from newspaper articles that referenced each hurricane during a period that spanned six days prior to landfall to twenty-two days after landfall, we identified the organizations that participated in each response network. We then used UCINET 6 to calculate network density and degree centralization, plotted longitudinally by date, and evaluated whether each network underwent structural change. The findings demonstrate that all four response networks underwent structural change, as a large heterogeneous collection of response organizations came together, collected and disseminated information, and sought to identify and implement solutions that would address the needs of those affected by the disaster event. While additional research is necessary to reveal the causal factors behind these structural changes, the findings presented in this article suggest that investments in information communication technologies, such as those made by the state of Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina, can help to facilitate the resilience of disaster response networks."

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Retrieved From:
Homeland Security Affairs Journal: http://www.hsaj.org/
Media Type:
Homeland Security Affairs (October 2017), v.13, article 9
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