Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access

Disaster relief volunteerism: Evaluating cities’ planning for the usage and management of spontaneous volunteers

Jason David Rivera, PhD, Zachary David Wood, MA

Abstract


This exploratory study sought to observe the perceptions, usage, and planned management of spontaneous volunteers in disaster planning and response within various urban environments. The authors discuss the perceptions of spontaneous volunteerism in America, specifically the challenges of using spontaneous volunteers in disaster response activities. A content analysis of the 50 largest cities in the US Office of Emergency Management Web sites and a survey instrument administered to emergency managers in these 50 cities were used to explore various questions raised throughout the discussion of the literature. The authors found significant discrepancies between what is stated in the disaster plans of cities and what emergency managers claim is covered in their plans. Of the managers surveyed, only a handful mention spontaneous volunteers in their plans at all, and even fewer

cities discuss them extensively. In addition, stated perceptions of the value of spontaneous volunteers may impact both how we plan for them and the value they provide.


Keywords


spontaneous volunteers, disaster relief, perceptions of volunteers, disaster response

Full Text:

PDF

References


National VOAD: Managing Spontaneous Volunteers in Times of Disaster. Alexandria, VA: National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, 2008.

Olson M: The Logic of Collective Action: Public Goods and the Theory of Group. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1965.

Mueller MW: Economic determinants of volunteer work by women. Signs. 1975; 1(2): 325-338.

Unger LS: Altruism as a motivation to volunteer. J Econ Psychol. 1991; 12(1): 71-100.

Smith DH: Determinants of voluntary association participation and volunteering: A literature review. Nonprofit Volunt Sect Q. 1994; 23(3): 243-263.

Harrison DA: Volunteer motivation and attendance decisions: Competitive theory testing in multiple samples from a homeless shelter. J Appl Psychol. 1995; 80(3): 371-385.

Clary EG, Snyder M: The motivations to volunteer theoretical and practical considerations. Curr Dir Psychol Sci. 1999; 8(5): 156-159.

Wilson J, Musick M: The effects of volunteering on the volunteer. Law Contemp Probl. 1999; 62(4): 141-168.

Eckstein S: Community as gift-giving: Collectivistic roots of volunteerism. Am Sociol Rev. 2001; 66(6): 829-851.

Vernon A, Foster L: Nonprofit agency perspectives of higher education service learning and volunteerism. J Nonprofit Public Sect Mark. 2002; 10(2): 207-230.

Fernandez L, Barbera J, Van Dorp J: Spontaneous volunteer response to disasters: The benefits and consequences of good intentions. J Emerg Manag. 2006; 4(5): 57-68.

Fritz CE, Mathewson JH: Convergence Behavior in Disasters: A Problem in Social Control: A Special Report Prepared for the Committee on Disaster Studies. Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences National Research Council, 1957.

Wenger DE, James TF, Reduction H, et al.: The Convergence of Volunteers in a Consensus Crisis: The Case of the 1985 Mexico City Earthquake. College Station, TX: Hazard Reduction Recovery Center, College of Architecture, Texas A&M University, 1990.

der Heide EA: Convergence behavior in disasters. Ann Emerg Med. 2003; 41(4): 463-466.

Dynes RR, Quarantelli EL: Helping Behavior in Large Scale Disasters. Newark, DE: Disaster Research Center, 1980.

Fischer H III: Behavioral and organizational responses to terrorism: A model based on 9/11. J Emerg Manag. 2003; 1(3): 42-48.

Michel LM: Personal responsibility and volunteering after a natural disaster: The case of Hurricane Katrina. Sociol Spectr. 2007; 27(6): 633-652.

Quarantelli EL: Research Based Criteria for Evaluating Disaster Planning and Managing. Newark, DE: Disaster Research Center, 1997.

Quarantelli EL: Major Criteria for Judging Disaster Planning and Managing Their Applicability in Developing Countries. Newark, DE: Disaster Research Center, 1998.

Stallings RA, Quarantelli EL: Emergent citizen groups and emergency management. Public Adm Rev. 1985; 45: 93-100.

Lindell MK, Tierney KJ, Perry RW: Facing the Unexpected: Disaster Preparedness and Response in the United States. Washington, DC: Joseph Henry Press, 2001.

Lowe S, Fothergill A: A need to help: Emergent volunteer behavior after September 11th. In Beyond September 11th: An Account of Post-Disaster Research. Boulder, CO: Natural Hazards Center, 2003: 293-314.

Olson RS, Olson RA: Urban heavy rescue. Earthq Spectra. 1987; 3(4): 645-658.

Ye Y, Okada N: Integrated Relief and Reconstruction Management Following a Natural Disaster. Laxenburg, Austria: IIASA-DPRI, 2002.

Wachtendorf T, Kendra JM: Considering Convergence, Coordination, and Social Capital in Disasters. Newark, DE: Disaster Research Center, 2004.

Johansson R: Professional Emergency Responders and Unorganized Volunteers: Incident Sites as Meeting Places. Sundsvall, Sweden: Mid Sweden University, 2013.

Fernandez LS: Volunteer Management System Design and Analysis for Disaster Response and Recovery. Ann Arbor, MI: ProQuest, 2007.

Kendra JM, Wachtendorf T: Reconsidering convergence and converger legitimacy in response to the world trade center disaster. Res Soc Probl Public Policy. 2003; 11: 97-122.

Wachtendorf T: Improvising 9/11: Organizational Improvisation Following the World Trade Center Disaster. Newark, DE: University of Delaware, 2004.

Drabek TE, McEntire DA: Emergent phenomena and multi-organizational coordination in disasters: Lessons from the research literature. Int J Mass Emerg Disasters. 2002; 20(2): 197-224.

Green W: Freelance response to the Site—Medical staff option of choice. The AAMA Executive. 2003: 1-16.

Alexander D: The voluntary sector in emergency response and civil protection: Review and recommendations. Int J Emerg Manag. 2010; 7(2): 151-166.

Roundtable ND: Countering Terrorism: Lessons Learned from Natural and Technological Disasters. Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2002.

Points of Light Foundation & Volunteer Ctr National Network, United States of America: Preventing a Disaster Within the Disaster: The Effective Use of Management of Unaffiliated Volunteers. Atlanta, GA: Points of Light Foundation, 2002.

Kendra JM, Wachtendorf T: Rebel Food… Renegade Supplies: Convergence After the World Trade Center Attack. Newark, DE: Disaster Research Center, 2001.

Sharon L: Averting a disaster within a disaster: The management of spontaneous volunteers following the 11 September 2001 attacks on the world trade center in New York. Volunt Action Lond Inst Volunt Res. 2004; 6: 11-20.

Barsky LE, Trainor JE, Torres MR, et al.: Managing volunteers: FEMA's urban search and rescue programme and interactions with unaffiliated responders in disaster response. Disasters. 2007; 31(4): 495-507.

Schmeltz MT, González SK, Fuentes L, et al.: Lessons from hurricane sandy: A community response in Brooklyn, New York. J Urban Health. 2013; 90(5): 799-809.

National VOAD: Hurricane Sandy Convening Report. Alexandria, VA: National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, 2013.

Halford E, Nolan S: Rogue Volunteers: Response to the WTC Attacks by Volunteers Who Refused to Leave. Chicago, IL: American Sociological Association, 2002: 16-19.

National VOAD Volunteer Management Committee: National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster Points of Consensus. Alexandria, VA: National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, 2011.

Cole FL: Content analysis: Process and application. Clin Nurse Specialist. 1988; 2(1): 53-57.

Bowen WM, Bowen C: Content analysis. In Handbook of Research Methods in Public Administration. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 2008: 689-704.

Kapucu N: Interorganizational coordination in dynamic context: Networks in emergency response management. Connections. 2005; 26(2): 33-48.

Kapucu N: Collaborative emergency management: Better community organizing, better public preparedness and response. Disasters. 2008; 32(2): 239-262.

Kapucu N, Augustin M, Garayev V: Interstate partnerships in emergency management: Emergency management assistance compact in response to catastrophic disasters. Public Adm Rev. 2009; 69(2): 297-313.

Polit DF, Beck CT: Nursing Research: Principles and Methods. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2004.

Hsieh HF, Shannon SE: Three approaches to qualitative content analysis. Qual Health Res. 2005; 15(9): 1277-1288.

Elo S, Kyngäs H: The qualitative content analysis process. J Adv Nurs. 2008; 62(1): 107-115.

Halchin LE: Electronic government: Government capability and terrorist resource. Gov Inf Q. 2004; 21(4): 406-419.

Relyea HC: Homeland security and information sharing: Federal policy considerations. Gov Inf Q. 2004; 21(4): 420-438.

Seifert JW: Data mining and the search for security: Challenges for connecting the dots and databases. Gov Inf Q. 2004; 21(4): 461-480.

Feinberg LE: FOIA, federal information policy, and information availability in a post-9/11 world. Gov Inf Q. 2004; 21(4): 439-460.

Seifert JW, Relyea HC: Do you know where your information is in the homeland security era? Gov Inf Q. 2004; 21(4): 399-405.

Yildiz M: E-government research: Reviewing the literature, limitations, and ways forward. Gov Inf Q. 2007; 24(3): 646-665.

Brown MM, Brudney JL: Achieving advanced electronic government services: An examination of obstacles and implications from an international perspective. Paper presented at National Public Management Research Conference, Bloomington, IN, 2001.

Ronaghan SA: Benchmarking e-Government: A Global Perspective: Assessing the Progress of the UN Member States. New York, NY: United Nations Division for Public Economics and Public Administration, American Society for Public Administration, 2002.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.5055/jem.2016.0279

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Copyright (c) 2016 Journal of Emergency Management