Book Review: Introduction to Emergency Management

By Haddow, Bullock, and Coppola; Reviewed by Dennis G. Byerly, CPP, CSEM

*****Introduction to Emergency Management, 4th Edition. By Haddow, Bullock, and Coppola. Elsevier, available from ASIS International, Item #1944,; 424 pages; $59 (ASIS members), $65 (nonmembers).

In this beginner’s guide to emergency management, Haddock, Bullock, and Coppola provide a well-rounded approach that fulfills the requirements of an introductory textbook. Their comments and assessments of the progress of emergency management lead the reader from early historical events—such as an 1803 New Hampshire fire—to some post-Katrina changes that affected national and local planning. The book reviews some of the history of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and its current organizational structure.

This well referenced book is formatted to stimulate the reader to seek more information on this valuable subject and is a good starting point. The authors appear to be knowledgeable and experienced and have put together a well organized book.

Unfortunately, while the publishing date is recent, it is always good to look at the references to see what is new. There is very little updated information after 2007, and most of the charts and graphs are from periods before that time.

The book proposes four management ideas for the future: adopt risk management as an operating philosophy instead of emergency management, embrace new and emerging technologies, adapt to shifts in sociological and demographic structure, and recreate emergency management with a new entity. All these ideas are potentially good processes for the future evolvement of emergency management.

As an additional benefit, the back pages of the book supply references with acronyms, Web sites, and citizen preparedness recommendations. These items are especially useful in obtaining additional information.

Reviewer: Dennis G. Byerly, CPP, CSEM (Certified Specialist in Emergency Management), is a California Certified Community Manager for Monarch Management Group LLC, in Palm Desert, California. He is the vice chair of the ASIS Commercial Real Estate Council.


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