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International Emergency Response: Forming Effective Post-Extreme Event Stabilization and Reconstruction Missions

Scheinert, Steve R. (2012) International Emergency Response: Forming Effective Post-Extreme Event Stabilization and Reconstruction Missions. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Debates about whether or not to engage in interventions to stabilize and rebuild states that have suffered extreme events, such as wars and large-scale natural disasters include questions about whether or not the intervening force can complete the mission. Intervening is a complex task that faces considerable political and military obstacles, even when the intervention is welcome. The situation is only more complex and difficult when the force is not welcome. This requires the reconstruction, and often construction, of governance capacity in the situation when all, or nearly all, capacity has been destroyed, but the situation is rapidly changing. To be effective, the missions and the governance structures that those missions are trying to build must have not only the capacity to govern, but also the resilience to respond and adapt to that changing environment.

This research examines the relationship between resilience, capacity, and a mission’s effectiveness. Capacity is the total amount of resources available to the mission, including the funds, materiel, and personnel that each organization devotes to the effort of completing mission tasks. Resilience is the mission’s ability to identify changes in the environment and adapt to them. Effectiveness is the mission’s ability to meet its formally stated goals, as well implicitly understood goals. Analyzing these relationships requires first answering these questions:
• Who are the actors?
• What are the system rules?
• What are the patterns of interaction?
• How do actors select actions?
• How do actors select which actors with whom they will interact?
• What are the patterns of variation in the data covered in the preceding questions?

The data to answer all of these questions is gathered both from existing data sources, including situation and newspaper reports, and from interviews with the individuals involved in the decision making during two reconstruction efforts: the 1992-2002 UN intervention in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the on-going UN intervention in Haiti, which began in 2004. The research constructs models of these events using qualitative systems analysis, network analysis, statistical analysis, and simulation analysis to show that increasing resilience increases effectiveness, after controlling for capacity.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Scheinert, Steve
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairComfort, Louise K.comfort@gspia.pitt.eduLKC
Committee MemberNelson, Paul J.pjnelson@pitt.eduPJNELSON
Committee MemberHayden, Robert M.rhayden@pitt.eduRHAYDEN
Committee MemberWilliams, Philridgway1@pitt.eduRIDGWAY1
Date: 27 September 2012
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 22 May 2012
Approval Date: 27 September 2012
Submission Date: 21 July 2012
Access Restriction: 1 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 1 year.
Number of Pages: 319
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public and International Affairs > Public and International Affairs
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: complex systems, post-conflict, network analysis, simulation, international affairs, public administration
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2012 17:07
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:00


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