Facing the Unexpected: Disaster Preparedness and Response in the United States

Paperback (Print)
Rent from BN.com
(Save 67%)
Est. Return Date: 07/21/2015
Buy Used
Buy Used from BN.com
(Save 39%)
Item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging.
Condition: Used – Good details
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $28.07
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 48%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (11) from $28.07   
  • New (3) from $56.97   
  • Used (8) from $28.07   


Facing the Unexpected presents the wealth of information derived from disasters around the world over the past 25 years. The authors explore how these findings can improve disaster programs, identify remaining research needs, and discuss disaster within the broader context of sustainable development.

How do different people think about disaster? Are we more likely to panic or to respond with altruism? Why are 110 people killed in a Valujet crash considered disaster victims while the 50,000 killed annually in traffic accidents in the U.S. are not? At the crossroads of social, cultural, and economic factors, this book examines these and other compelling questions.

The authors review the influences that shape the U.S. governmental system for disaster planning and response, the effectiveness of local emergency agencies, and the level of professionalism in the field. They also compare technological versus natural disaster and examine the impact of technology on disaster programs.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

Table of Contents

1 Conceptualizing Disasters and Their Impacts 1
The Hazard Cycle and Disasters 4
Classic Approaches to Defining and Studying Disasters 8
The Natural Hazards Perspective 11
Conceptual Debates in the Study of Disasters 12
Emerging Theoretical Perspectives 16
Linking Hazards and Disaster Research 22
Organization of This Book 24
2 Getting Ready: Research on Disaster Preparedness 27
Household Preparedness 29
Organizational Preparedness 46
Interorganizational and Community Disaster Preparedness 58
Preparedness at the State and National Levels 63
Research Issues and Unanswered Questions 69
3 Moving Into Action: Individual and Group Behavior in Disasters 81
Household Emergency Response 83
Emergency Shelter and Housing 100
Other Individual and Group Behavior During and Immediately Following Disaster Impact 106
Issues for Future Research 118
4 Meeting the Challenge: Organizational and Governmental Response in Disasters 121
Response Activities of Emergency Management and Other Crisis-Relevant Organizations 123
Private-Sector Organizations in Disasters 131
Interorganizational and Community Response 143
Supra-Local and National Response 153
Issues for Future Research 155
5 Factors Influencing Disaster Preparedness and Response 157
Factors Associated with the Extent and Quality of Preparedness and Response Activities 157
Sociocultural and Sociodemographic Factors 167
Disaster Agent Characteristics 188
Concluding Observations 197
6 The Wider Context: Societal Factors Influencing Emergency Management Policy and Practice 199
The Intergovernmental and Policy Context 200
Cultural Influences on Hazard- and Disaster-Related Behavior 212
Economic Factors 220
Technological Change 224
Professionalization and Knowledge Transfer 233
Concluding Observations 240
7 Where Do We Go From Here? Improving What We Know About Disasters While Coping with Them More Effectively 243
Disaster Research and Social Theory 247
Preparedness and Response in Context: Seeing the Larger Picture 250
Preparedness, Response, and Sustainability 254
References 261
Index 291
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)