June 23, 2017

Volume 2, Number 1 (Fall 2011)

 

EDITOR’S INTRODUCTION

Richard W. Schwester, Ph.D.

 

Special Issue on Hurricane Katrina


Articles


USING THE OPEN SYSTEMS PERSPECTIVE TO UNDERSTAND CRITICAL INCIDENTS

Denise D.P. Thompson, Ph.D.

 

At the end of its Fall 2010 conference, the Academy for Critical Incident Analysis (ACIA) called for the development of frameworks that would aid in the study and analysis of critical incidents. This paper responds to that call. The paper answers the question, “is it possible to construct a framework that is generic enough to encapsulate the essential components observed in all critical incidents?” The paper utilizes the open systems perspective to develop a conceptual framework to help us delineate and understand critical incidents and how they evolve. The paper presents examples to substantiate arguments made about the framework. The chief example relied on for this purpose is Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Open systems is a good candidate to help our understanding of critical incidents because like critical incidents an open system is one whose component parts are so interrelated and interdependent that any change in one component produces simultaneous changes in other components and so alter the thing as a whole. The open systems perspective helps us to focus on the dynamical nature of critical incidents. In addition, open systems perspective helps us to consider the fact that there is no simple cause and effect relationship in critical incidents, but that there are multiple relationships, and simultaneous consequences throughout the critical incident system. A notable insight gained from utilizing the proposed framework is that critical incidents are non-linear in that the components within the system interact everywhere within the system in a non-random and patterned way. Therefore utilizing a holistic approach to studying critical incidents is essential to understanding these incidents. The paper ends by proposing a series of steps to guide application of the proposed framework.

 

 

Keywords: open systems, Hurricane Katrina, critical incidents

 

 

GUIDING PRINCIPLES: REBUILDING TRUST IN GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC POLICY IN THE AFTERMATH OF HURRICANE KATRINA

DeMond Shondell Miller, Ph.D. and Jason David Rivera, M.P.A.

 

During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, inhabitants of the United States experienced the horror of watching millions of their fellow citizens‟ cries for help initially go unheard. The poorest residents of New Orleans seemed to be the most vulnerable to the ill-crafted policies of the past that today spawn high levels of social distress, unemployment, rampant alienation, neglect of communities, and political isolation. Atkins & Moy (2005) argue that this human tragedy may seem to be an anomaly, but it is part of past and present social inequity. Hopefully, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina will aid in our understanding of the barriers to policy formation and implementation that exist following a catastrophe. This paper will help to establish guiding principles for overcoming barriers to effective civic engagement, and serve as a catalyst for public policy and practice.

This analysis explores the impact of decades of distrust felt by many citizens of the United States and offers insight for policy crafters among citizens and community organizations, government officials, and intergovernmental agencies. By advancing the idea of reflexive inclusion, such as transparency in government transactions, sustainable equity, and the promotion of a result-based culture, we contend that not only can homes and buildings be restored, but also advance trust and reciprocity among the stakeholders at the local, state, and federal levels.

 

Keywords: large-scale disasters, policy formulation, transparency, trust, reciprocity

 

 

RACE AND RIGHTS IN TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY NEW ORLEANS

D’Ann R. Penner, Ph.D.

 

This article analyzes the consequences of the militarized seven-day aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans by looking back to the history of race relations in the United States and by looking forward to how the use of federal resources furthered a revanchist local agenda in changing the racial demographics of New Orleans. Part I illustrates African American narrators‘ experiences of human rights‘ violations during Katrina‘s televised immediate aftermath and Part II describes the more invisible phase of permanent displacement and/or dispossession that began on September 4, 2005. The article concludes with narrator-oriented recommendations for accountability and restitution within a framework of constitutional rights.

 

Keywords: Hurricane Katrina, race, human rights, constitutional rights, displacement

 

 

Monograph


REFLECTIONS ON DISPLACEMENT AND ITS CONSEQUENCES AFTER HURRICANE KATRINA

Arnold R. Isaacs

 

This report is based on the proceedings at ACIA‘s conference on “Critical Incidents Analysis: Displacement as an Obstacle to Recovery” held in New Orleans, Louisiana, June 9-11, 2010. Quotations from the conference transcript have in some instances been slightly edited for greater clarity and to eliminate repetition or extraneous material.

Keywords: Hurricane Katrina, Displacement