of government are crucial to improving community resilience. Community resilience will grow as the knowledge, experience, and understanding of these roles and responsibilities grow among decision makers at all levels of government.
Currently, a multitude of activities, programs, and policies exist at local, state, and federal levels to address some part of resilience for the nation. Several of the critical processes, such as land-use planning and building code enforcement, are the responsibility of local groups or governments. The federal policy role is primarily to ensure that resilience policies are nationally consistent and to provide information and best practices for development of appropriate policies at all levels. Consideration of potential unintended consequences of a new policy with respect to disaster resilience is also important.
The nation does not have an overall vision or coordinating strategy for resilience. Recent work on homeland security and disaster reduction are good beginnings, but the current suite of policies, practices, and decisions affecting resilience are conducted on an ad hoc basis with little formal communication, coordination, or collaboration. In fact, some policies, decisions and practices actually erode resilience.
Leaders at the local, state, and federal level are increasingly aware of community resilience and how it might be advanced through a variety of decisions and processes. Although many of those critical decisions and processes to improve resilience occur at the state and local levels, the federal government plays a central role in providing guidance for policy and program development to assist local communities in their pursuit of greater resilience. Development of new policies informed by an awareness of resilience, how it can be promoted through decisions and processes, and how resilience can be unintentionally eroded through poorly informed decisions is essential.
Recommendation 6: All federal agencies should ensure that they are promoting and coordinating national resilience in their programs and policies. A resilience policy review and self-assessment within agencies and strong communication among agencies are keys to achieving this kind of coordination.
Steps for Implementation:
This commitment will require that each federal agency conduct a resilience self-assessment and communicate the analysis of its key resilience programs and activities to agency staff, to key partners and stakeholders, and to the public. Such an assessment includes
(a) The manner in which each agency’s mission contributes to the resilience of the nation;
(d) How an agency’s programs provide knowledge or guidance to state and local officials for advancing resilience;