Policy Network Approach to Coordinated Disaster Response

Kwang Deok Kim, Liaquat Hossain

In this paper, we explore the formation of network relationships among disaster relief agencies during the process of responding to an unexpected event. The relationship is investigated through variables derived from the policy network theory, and four cases from three developed countries such as (i) Hurricane Katrina in the US; (ii) Typhoon Maemi in South Korea; (iii) Kobe; and, (iv) Tohoku Earthquake in Japan that failed to cope with extreme events forms the basis for case study presented here. We argue that structural characteristics of multi-jurisdictional coordination may facilitate or impede in responding to a complex nature of recent disaster. We further highlight the promise of policy network approach in facilitating the development of multi-jurisdictional coordination process which may provide new avenue to improve the communication and coordination of hierarchical command control driven organizations with the local community. Our proposed novel approach in investigating the usefulness of network approach through media content analysis for emergency may provide opportunity as a countermeasure to a traditional hierarchical coordination, which may give further insights in establishing a more effective network for emergency.

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