Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management

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Volume 19 Issue 3 (September 2011), Pages 123-181

US City Managers' Perceptions of Disaster Risks: Consequences for Urban Emergency Management (pages 136-146)

Drawing on survey data collected from chief administrative officers (CAOs) from the largest US cities, this paper analyzes the role of CAO risk perception. Several major questions are asked. How valid are the perceptions of CAOs regarding the level of risks posed to their cities by natural disasters? Do differences in perceptions vary based upon how threatened CAOs say they feel? Do differences in management activities, public procedures, and political concerns result as a consequence of how threatened CAOs say they feel? Do perceptions of threat align with objective vulnerability characteristics? The findings show that there is misperception of risk among CAOs. Risk perceptions influence perceptions as well as management activities, public procedures, and political concerns.

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