Reconceptualizing household disaster readiness: The “Get Ready” Pyramid


  • Michele M. Wood, PhD
  • Megumi Kano, DrPH
  • Dennis S. Mileti, PhD
  • Linda B. Bourque, PhD



disaster, emergency, mitigation, preparedness, readiness, information dissemination, public education, recommendations


The terrorist events of September 11, 2001 were followed by a dramatic increase in public education and information efforts to improve preparations for disasters across our nation. Using the State of California as a case study, this article provides an overview of existing public education campaigns intended to enhance readiness; identifies shortcomings in current approaches; and presents a comprehensive public readiness typology, the “Get Ready” Pyramid, a framework organized along a continuum of cost, intended for use by any individual or entity wishing to promote or adopt readiness actions. Future research should evaluate the framework’s utility and impact on behavior.

Author Biographies

Michele M. Wood, PhD

Department of Community Health Sciences, School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles.

Megumi Kano, DrPH

Southern California Injury Prevention Research Center, Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles.

Dennis S. Mileti, PhD

Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology and Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado at Boulder, Colorado.

Linda B. Bourque, PhD

Department of Community Health Sciences, School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles.


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How to Cite

Wood, PhD, M. M., M. Kano, DrPH, D. S. Mileti, PhD, and L. B. Bourque, PhD. “Reconceptualizing Household Disaster Readiness: The ‘Get Ready’ Pyramid”. Journal of Emergency Management, vol. 7, no. 4, July 2009, pp. 25-37, doi:10.5055/jem.2009.0027.