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The Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force's Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines

The Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force's Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines: An Initial Assessment of Implementation by Federal Agencies

Melissa L. Finucane
Noreen Clancy
Henry H. Willis
Debra Knopman
Copyright Date: 2014
Published by: RAND Corporation
Pages: 74
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  • Book Info
    The Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force's Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines
    Book Description:

    To ensure that federal agencies incorporate key principles of resilience into their formulation, evaluation, and prioritization of infrastructure investments related to Sandy rebuilding, the Presidential Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force developed its Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines. RAND researchers conducted an initial assessment of federal agencies’ implementation of the guidelines to identify the main opportunities and challenges.

    eISBN: 978-0-8330-8936-6
    Subjects: Population Studies, Sociology, Environmental Science, Business

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Preface
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  4. Tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  5. Summary
    (pp. ix-xii)
  6. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  7. Abbreviations
    (pp. xv-xvi)
  8. CHAPTER ONE Introduction
    (pp. 1-8)

    The United States is increasingly threatened by natural disasters, reflecting the changing demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of coastal populations, the nation’s aging infrastructure, and the influences of sea-level rise and other climate change effects (Munich Re, 2012; National Climatic Data Center, no date; Pielke et al., 2008). In October 2012, Hurricane Sandy struck the East Coast of the country, devastating communities across the region. Soon thereafter, the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act (DRAA) of February 29, 2013, or the Hurricane Sandy supplemental bill, provided more than $50 billion to help communities rebuild.

    The scale of the Hurricane Sandy disaster motivated the...

  9. CHAPTER TWO How the Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines Have Been Implemented
    (pp. 9-20)

    To assess the perceived value and feasibility of the Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines (i.e., the extent to which the guidelines were considered worthwhile and were able to be implemented when distributing Sandy supplemental funds), we first needed to determine how the guidelines have been used in decisions about how to spend federal funds to recover from Hurricane Sandy. To address this question, we asked our interviewees to share their knowledge of the guidelines and how they have been implemented, if at all, in the context of their specific agency or jurisdiction’s infrastructure investments. We explored both how implementation of the guidelines...

  10. CHAPTER THREE Lessons Learned from Implementing the Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines
    (pp. 21-34)

    The Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines reflect an innovative approach to encouraging federal agencies to incorporate resilience principles in their infrastructure investment decisions. To identify how the guidelines might be useful for guiding future decisions by federal agencies, we explored the opportunities and challenges encountered in their current implementation. Evaluating lessons learned contributes to the iterative refinement of best practices for complex resilience programs by providing information about the content of the guidelines, processes related to implementing the guidelines, and conditions under which the guidelines are implemented that facilitate or impede progress toward national resilience. To identify lessons learned, we asked our...

  11. CHAPTER FOUR Applying the Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines to Nonrecovery Environments
    (pp. 35-38)

    Infrastructure resilience is important to consider not only after a disaster but also throughout the life cycle of infrastructure systems. A series of decisions during construction and operation (e.g., regarding location, design, and funding) contributes to the long-term service and safety of infrastructure. Making decisions in the context of a common resilience framework is viewed as a best practice for improving national infrastructure resilience. To address the question of whether the Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines could be applied in nonrecovery environments, we asked interviewees to consider the potential value and feasibility of using the guidelines beyond decisions about Sandy supplemental funds....

  12. CHAPTER FIVE Findings and Conclusions
    (pp. 39-44)

    To be resilient, regions need to withstand the effects of a disaster, respond effectively, recover quickly, adapt to changing conditions, and manage future disaster risk. Following the havoc wreaked on the East Coast of the United States by Hurricane Sandy in 2012, a presidential task force developed the Infrastructure Resilience Guidelines to ensure that federal agencies incorporate key principles of resilience into their formulation, evaluation, and prioritization of infrastructure investments (see Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force, 2013a). The seven principles in the guidelines are described at a general level and were released after some of the Sandy supplemental funding was...

  13. APPENDIX A Semistructured Interview Protocol
    (pp. 45-46)
  14. APPENDIX B Detailed Methods
    (pp. 47-50)
  15. APPENDIX C Sample Grantees
    (pp. 51-52)
  16. References
    (pp. 53-58)