Organizing for Homeland Security after Katrina: Is Adaptive Management What’s Missing?


Charles R. Wise is a professor of public affairs in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University. He is a three-time recipient of the William E. Mosher and Frederick C. Mosher Award for the best academic article published in PAR. E-mail:


This article analyzes performance and organizational issues revealed by the governmental response to Hurricane Katrina. It reviews and analyzes the organizational changes made in the federal government to address homeland security and presents several proposals for reorganization suggested by policy makers in the aftermath of Katrina. A management approach rooted in adaptive management is presented for use in the ongoing process of organizing for homeland security.