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The Politics of Crisis Management


  • 1 table
  • Page extent: 192 pages
  • Size: 228 x 152 mm
  • Weight: 0.32 kg


 (ISBN-13: 9780521607339 | ISBN-10: 0521607337)

Crisis management has become a defining feature of contemporary governance. In times of crisis, communities and members of organizations expect their leaders to minimize the impact of the crisis at hand, while critics and bureaucratic competitors try to seize the moment to blame incumbent rulers and their policies. In this extreme environment, policy makers must somehow establish a sense of normality, and foster collective learning from the crisis experience. In this uniquely comprehensive analysis, the authors examine how leaders deal with the strategic challenges they face, the political risks and opportunities they encounter, the errors they make, the pitfalls they need to avoid, and the paths away from crisis they may pursue. This book is grounded in over a decade of collaborative, cross-national case study research, and offers an invaluable multidisciplinary perspective. This is an original and important contribution from experts in public policy and international security.

• Offers the first comprehensive analysis of the special nature of political/public leadership in major crisis • Unique multidisciplinary perspective on crisis management • Grounded in over a decade of collaborative, cross-national in-depth case study research


1. Crisis management in political systems; 2. Sense making: grasping crises as they unfold; 3. Decision making: critical choices and their implementation; 4. Meaning making: crisis management as political communication; 5. End games: crisis termination and accountability; 6. Learning from crisis and the politics of reform; 7. Dealing with crisis; A memo to public leaders.

Prize Winner

Herbert A Simon Award for the best book in Public Administration of ASPA. - Winner


'This compact monograph should be required reading for anyone who wishes to engage with the institutional implications of extreme natural or political events in the coming decade.' International Public Management Journal

'Their excellent book provides a concise and insightful account of state-of-the-art policy practise and research on crisis management in the post 9/11 period. … the authors provide a coherent and stimulating account.' Public Administration

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