Beyond Disaster Preparedness

Building a Resilience-Oriented Workforce for the Future

Published in: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Volume 14, Number 12 (December 2017). doi: 10.3390/ijerph14121563

Posted on RAND.org on January 16, 2018

by Jaime Madrigano, Anita Chandra, Tracy Costigan, Joie D. Acosta

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Enhancing citizens' and communities' resilience is critical to adapt successfully to ongoing challenges faced by communities, as well as acute shocks resulting from disasters. While significant progress has been made in this area, several research and practice gaps remain. A crucial next step to advance resilience is the development of a resilience-oriented workforce. This narrative review examines existing literature to determine key components of a resilience-oriented workforce, with a focus on organizational structures, training and education, and leadership models. Reviewed articles spanned a variety of study types, including needs assessments of existing workforce, program evaluations, and reviews/commentaries. A resilience-oriented workforce spans many disciplines and training programs will need to reflect that. It requires a collaborative organizational model that promotes information sharing structures. Leadership models should foster a balance between workforce autonomy and operation as a collective entity. Optimal strategies to develop a resilience-oriented workforce have yet to be realized and future research will need to collect and synthesize data to promote and evaluate the growth of this field.

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