Integrated response as a process for enhancing the incident command system
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Philosophy
The devastating societal impacts of disruptive events have emphasised the need for more effective and unified emergency response arrangements. While policies that guide strategies, measures or approaches are not lacking in the emergency sector, they tend to be inadequate for response and relatively ineffective during response to large-scale or unprecedented events. This research critically examines theoretical bases and practice systems for emergency response, in order to identify useful community functions which can be integrated with emergency management response. The aim is to develop an integrated response framework that can be adopted to improve response to disruptive events.
The data for this research were gathered through case study analyses of communities in Christchurch, which provided context for and helped define the scope of community functions required for emergency response. Data were also collected in semi-structured interviews and focus group sessions with different community groups and organisations, emergency management professionals, and officials working in Christchurch City Council.
The analysis indicates that relevant functions exist within communities, and that four types of community functions can be used for improving emergency management response. Community functions identified were seen to possess relationships, interactions and qualities lacking in the emergency sector; characteristics that are essential for operational command and control response processes. The major research outcome is the development of a framework that integrates community functions with command and control structure as a contribution to improving response to disruptive events.