Managing Human and Natural Disasters in Developing Nations: The Multidimensional Bureaucratic Role
This chapter proposes emergency, or disaster, management as a basic and critical dimension of comparative and international management, particularly in developing nations. Managing human and natural disasters represents a pervasive and complex challenge to the public bureaucracies of developing nations. Ironically, natural and human disasters are often perceived as sporadic, episodic, and occasional by many comparative administration scholars and analysts. Indeed, routine and emergency management are frequently characterized as opposite ends of the public management continuum. The multidimensional role of public bureaucracy in disasters reflects the varied nature of disaster contexts. Disasters vary in type, time frames, intensity, locus, and human impact. The disaster event proceeds on a time frame from very sudden and immediate to emergent. The intensity of disaster often represents the intersection of human and natural disaster. Included in reform is the increasing privatization of bureaucratic activity and decentralization of overcentralized administrative systems.