Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management

Skip to Search

Skip to Navigation

Volume 25 Issue 3 (September 2017), Pages 117-193

Resilience, culture change, and cancer risk reduction in a fire rescue organization: Clean gear as the new badge of honor (pages 171-181)

  • Author(s): Tyler R. Harrison, Fan Yang, David Anderson, Susan E. Morgan, Jessica Wendorf Muhamad, Ed Talavera, Natasha Schaefer Solle, David Lee, Alberto J. Caban‐Martinez, Erin Kobetz
  • Published 09 Aug 2017
  • DOI: 10.1111/1468-5973.12182

Fire rescue organizations are central to community models of resilience, especially in the context of crisis. The ability of fire rescue organizations to fulfill their role relies on their ability to operate at full capacity; however, fire rescue services may face internal crises that require these organizations to be resilient in their own right. This study uses grounded theory drawing on concepts of organizational culture and resilience to show how one key partner in the community model of resilience (Palm Beach County Fire Rescue) is working to address their own crisis—an epidemic of cancer. Firefighters are engaging in behaviours to increase resilience by working towards cultural change to reduce cancer risk, using social capital to increase networks and expertise, and utilizing internal assets to enact change. Barriers to change include cultural practices, perceived threats to occupational practice, and logistics and resources to enact desired change. A model of risk reduction and resilience is advanced that explores how organizational culture and practice both support and undermine individual resilience and organizational resilience. Implications for communication and change efforts are explored.

Add This link

Bookmark and Share>