Institutions, Incentives, and Disaster Relief: The Case of the Federal Emergency Management Agency Following Hurricane Katrina

International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 35, No. 7, pp. 501-511, Summer 2008

Posted: 10 Sep 2011

See all articles by Christopher Westley

Christopher Westley

Florida Gulf Coast University

Robert P. Murphy

Institute for Energy Research

William L. Anderson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: July 9, 2008

Abstract

The actions the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency in the months following Hurricane Katrina are critiqued, with an emphasis on how private-sector responses would have differed. We conclude that a large and bureaucratized response to disasters hinders economic calculation, incentive structure, and property rights institutions, all of which are crucial for rapid disaster response, the relief of human suffering, and the promotion of an efficient allocation of resources. The role of public-sector emergency management responses to disasters in general is questioned.

Keywords: Public Economics, Bureaucracy, Institutional Economics, Emergency Preparedness

JEL Classification: D73, H12, Q54

Suggested Citation

Westley, Christopher and Murphy, Robert P. and Anderson, William L., Institutions, Incentives, and Disaster Relief: The Case of the Federal Emergency Management Agency Following Hurricane Katrina (July 9, 2008). International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 35, No. 7, pp. 501-511, Summer 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1925137

Christopher Westley (Contact Author)

Florida Gulf Coast University ( email )

10485 FGCU Blvd S
Ft. Myers, FL 33965-6565
United States

Robert P. Murphy

Institute for Energy Research ( email )

6219 Olympia Drive
Houston, TX 77057
United States

William L. Anderson

affiliation not provided to SSRN

No Address Available

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