DRC-Disaster Research Center

Quick Response Studies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

World Trade Center Research

Principal Investigators: Dr. Kathleen Tierney, Dr Benigno Aguirre
Senior Personnel: Tricia Wachtendorf, Dr. James Kendra
Research Assistants:Brian Monahan, Gabe Santos, Joseph E Trainor, Jill Cope
Funding Agencies: Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research (MCEER), the National Science Foundation

Study Description

On September 13th, a quick-response field team from the Disaster Research Center traveled to New York City to observe the efforts underway in response to the tragic attack on the World Trade Center. Since that time, faculty and staff from the DRC have been returning to New York City to systematically observe emergency management activities, conduct informal interviews, attend planning meetings, collect documents, and employ other unobtrusive field work strategies in the impacted area. Settings in which fieldwork has been conducted include the City's Emergency Operations Center, incident command posts in the Ground Zero area, the FEMA Disaster Field Office, supply and food staging areas, bereavement centers, and hospitals.

Since September 13, 2001, DRC has been conducting field work and using other data-collection methods to document and analyze the community wide organizational response to the World Trade Center attack in New York City. The Center is seeking to identify lessons learned that can help other cities better prepare for and respond to catastrophic and near-catastrophic events, including both those caused by  intentional acts of terrorism and those caused by natural and technological disasters.  DRC's ongoing research program on the World Trade Center disaster is being carried out with funding from the National Science Foundation, the Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research at the State University of New York at Buffalo, and the Public Entity Risk Institute.

Our nation has learned much as a result of September 11 and its aftermath.  Among those lessons is the need to enhance the capacity of communities to prepare for and respond to major community crises, regardless of their causes.  This has been a focus of DRC's work for four decades, and we thank the disaster victims, public and private officials, and scholars who have provided and who continue to provide important insights on how to better manage hazards and disasters.

Study Related Publications

Aguirre, B.E. and E.L. Quarantelli. 2008. "THe Phenomenolgy of Death Counts In Disasters; The Invisible Dead in the 9-11 WTC Attack. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters. Mar 2(1) 19-39

Dynes, Russell R. 2003.“Finding Order in Disorder: Continuities to the 9/11 Response.” International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters 21(3).

Kendra, James M., and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2006. "Community innovation and Disasters" in Havidan Rodriguez, Enrico L. Quarantelli and Russell R. Dynes (editors) Handbook of Disaster Research. New York Springer. pp 316-334

Kendra, James M., and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2003.“Creativity in Emergency Response after the World Trade Center Attack.” Pp. in Beyond September 11th. An Account of Post-Disaster Research. Special Publication #39 Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO.

Kendra, James M., and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2003 “Elements of Resilience After the World Trade Center Disaster: Reconstituting New York City’s Emergency Operations Centre.” Disasters 27(1): 37-53. 9

Kendra, James M., and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2003 “Reconsidering Convergence and Converger Legitimacy in Response to the World Trade Center Disaster.” Pp. 97-122 in Lee Clarke (ed.) Research in Social Problems and Public Policy. Elsevier Science Ltd.

Kendra, James. M, Tricia Wachtendorf and E.L. Quarantelli. 2003.“The Evacuation of Lower Manhattan by Water Transport on September 11: An Unplanned ‘Success’.” Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Safety 29(6): 316-318.

Kendra, James. M, Tricia Wachtendorf, and E.L. Quarantelli. 2002.“Who Was in Charge of the Massive Evacuation of Lower Manhattan by Water Transport on September 11? No One Was, Yet It Was an Extremely Successful Operation. Implications?” Securitas 1(5): 3-5.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2003.“Disaster Beliefs and Institutional Interests: Recycling Disaster Myths in the Aftermath of 9-11.” Pp. 33-51 in Lee Clarke (ed.) Terrorism and Disaster: New Threats, New Ideas. Research in Social Problems and Public Policy, Vol. 11. Elsevier Science Ltd.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2002“Strength of a City: A Disaster Research Perspective on the World Trade Center Attack.” Published on the Web by the Social Science Research Council at http://www.ssrc.org/sept11.

Tierney, Kathleen and Joseph Trainor. 2004."Networks and Resilience in the World Trade Center Disaster." MCEER Research Accomplishments 2003-2004. The Research Foundation of the State of New York, 2004.

Trainor, Joseph E. 2004.“Searching for a System: Multi-organizational Coordination in the September 11th World Trade Center Search and Rescue Response.” Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice and Disaster Research Center, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware.

Wachtendorf, Tricia. 2004.“Improvising 9/11: Organizational Improvisation in the World Trade Center Disaster.” Doctoral Dissertation No. 35, Disaster Research Center, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware.

Many preleminary papers on 9-11 can also be found on the DRC Institutional Repository

 

Study Related Presentations

2004

Monahan, Brian. 2004."From Ground Zero to Ground Hero: Emergent Public Drama and September 11, 2001." Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Social Problems, San Francisco, California, August 13, 2004.

Monahan, Brian. 2004.""Response and Recovery at Ground Zero as Emergent Public." Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association, San Francisco, California, August 15, 2004. 2003

Trainor, Joseph .2004.“Multi-Organizational Networks and Community Resilience in Extreme Events: A Case Study of the September 11th World Trade Center Attacks” Presented with Kathleen J. Tierney at the Annual Meeting of the Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research, Los Angeles, California, January, 2004.

Trainor, Joseph .2004.“ “Searching for a System Multi-organizational Coordination in the September 11th World Trade Center Search and Rescue Response.” Presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association, San Francisco, California, August 15, 2004.

Wachtendorf, Tricia and James Kendra. 2004 “Creativity and Coordination in Disaster Response." Invited Presenter at the 4th Workshop for Comparative Study on Urban Earthquake Disaster Management, Kobe, Japan, January, 2004.

Wachtendorf, Tricia and James Kendra. 2004 "Integrating Improvisation in Disaster Response Planning." Invited Presenter at the European Crisis Management Academy International Conference, Poljce, Slovenia, March 12, 2004.

2003

Dynes, Russell R. 2003.“Finding Order in Disorder.” Presentation at the Eastern Sociological Society 73rd Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, March 2.

Kendra, James M. and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2003.“Emergence and Convergence in the Post-Disaster Environment: Recent Research Perspectives.” Invited Presentation at National Disaster Medical System Conference, March 12, Reno, NV.

Kendra, James M. and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2003 “Inter-organizational Response to the World Trade Center Attack: Lessons Learned.” Presented at the Annual World Conference On Disaster Management, Toronto, Canada, June 23.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2003.“Conceptualizing and Measuring Organizational and Community Resilience: Lessons from the Emergency Response Following the September, 2001 Attack on the World Trade Center.” Paper presented at the Third Comparative Workshop on Urban Earthquake Disaster Management, Kobe, Japan, January 30-31.

2002

Kendra, James M. and Tricia Wachtendorf .2002.“Creativity in Emergency Response after the World Trade Center Attack.” Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Emergency Management Society, May 14, Waterloo, Canada.

Kendra, James M. and Tricia Wachtendorf .2002.“ “Rebel Food…Renegade Supplies: Convergence after the World Trade Center Attack.” Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, August 17, Chicago, IL.

Monahan, Brian.2002.“From Ground Zero to Ground Hero: Status Appropriation and FDNY” Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, August 16-19, Chicago, IL.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2002“Community Response to the World Trade Center Attack: Lessons Learned and Parallels with Research on Group and Organizational Responses to Disasters.” Plenary presentation at the annual Natural Hazards Workshop, July 15, Boulder, CO.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2002 “Community Response to the World Trade Center Attack: Achieving Resilience in the Face of Near-Catastrophic Events.” Plenary presentation at the 7th National Conference on Earthquake Engineering, July 24, Boston, MA.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2002 “Not Again! Recycling Disaster Myths in the Aftermath of 9-11.” Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, August 16-19, Chicago, IL.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2002 “Risk Communication and Hazards: Lessons From Research.” Invited presentation at the National Academy of Sciences Forum on “Alerting America: Effective Risk Communication,” sponsored by the NAS Natural Disasters Roundtable, October 31, Washington, D.C.

Tierney, Kathleen J. 2002.“Social Science and Disaster Research Perspectives on the September 11 Attacks,” Presentation at Congressional briefing on “Human Response to Disaster.” April 24, Washington, DC

Wachtendorf, Tricia. 2002 “Rising from the Ashes: Organizational Adaptation Following the September 11th, 2001 World Trade Center Attack.” Presentation at the International Research Committee on Disasters Meeting at the Meeting of the International Sociological Association's World Congress of Sociology, July 11, Brisbane, Australia.

Wachtendorf, Tricia 2002.“A Changing Risk Environment: Lessons Learned from the 9/11 World Trade Center Attack.” Invited Presentation for the Manitoba Disaster Management Conference, Special Session Sponsored by the Canadian Emergency Preparedness Association, March 6, Winnipeg, Canada.

Wachtendorf, Tricia 2002.“ “Emergency Management in a Changing World: Lessons Learned from the 9/11 World Trade Center Disaster.” Invited Presentation for the Social Perspectives on Disaster Workshop Sponsored by Emergency Management Australia, July 2, Mt. Macedon, Australia.

2001


Kendra, James M. and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2001.“Response and Resilience in the World Trade Center Attack.” Presentation at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, December.

Kendra, James and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2001. “Elements of Community Resilience in the World Trade Center Attack.” Presentation at the Regional Science Association International Annual Conference, Charleston, SC, November.

Tierney, Kathleen J., Benigno Aguirre, James M. Kendra, and Tricia Wachtendorf. 2001. “Organizational and Community Resilience in the World Trade Center Disaster.” Invited presentation at the workshop Learning from Urban Disasters: National Science Foundation Response and Opportunities for Future Research sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the Institute for Civil Infrastructure Systems, December 12, New York, NY.