A Methodology for Inter-Organizational Emergency Management Continuity Planning

A Methodology for Inter-Organizational Emergency Management Continuity Planning

John Lindström (Luleå University of Technology, Sweden), Dan Harnesk (Luleå University of Technology, Sweden), Elina Laaksonen (Luleå University of Technology, Sweden) and Marko Niemimaa (Luleå University of Technology, Sweden)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0167-3.ch014
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Abstract

This paper extends emergency management literature by developing a methodology for emergency management continuity planning (EmCP). In particular, the methodology focuses on inter-organizational continuous and coordinated planning among emergency management organizations. The authors draw on Soft Systems Methodology (Checkland & Scholes, 1999; Checkland, 2000), using it as a base for better understanding of EmCP. Barriers that must be overcome before the methodology can be introduced and established, as well as potential benefits, are also discussed.
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Business Continuity Planning Challenges

Butler and Gray (2006) state that the theoretical aspects of business continuity planning are underdeveloped in IS literature and influenced by professionals articulating how and why organizations should prepare for unexpected events. Further, Tierney (2006) adds that businesses have only recently begun to be studied as units of analysis in disaster research, and systematic research on different business continuity matters is lacking, despite the importance of businesses for society. Influenced by related research from, for instance, disruption risk management, supply chain management and disruptive events like 9/11, a more networked focus is emerging involving parts of the network (or eco-system) around the organization and its processes (Verstraete, 2004; Hiles, 2007; Bajgoric, 2008). Having both an organizational and inter-organizational focus is for many organizations important, as their processes often are not just dependent on what the own organization does but also on what the other organizations, i.e. business partners, part of the processes, do or do not do. Thus, an organization’s business continuity planning activities are commonly also to a varying degree involved in their business partners’ ditto activities.

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