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Body of Knowledge Project Prof. Rick Sylves
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  1. Body of Knowledge ProjectProf. Rick Sylves If practitioners and academics working in the realm of emergency management want emergency management to become both a profession and a field that is a component of one or more existing academic disciplines, it stands to reason that they would help grow the “field” by producing and recommending to others important works of scholarship in their field. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  2. Body of Knowledge Project In academic terms, emergency management is subject to change in at least four ways: 1.Those who actually do emergency management work make personal contributions to a body of scholarship about the field. 2.Those who do research and teaching in academic settings make personal or collective contributions to a body of scholarship about the field of emergency management. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  3. Ways emergency management is subject to change, continued 3. Events transform the field in that certain mega-disasters, or relatively new, unique forms of disaster, transpire and so encourage practitioners and academics to reshape the field. 4. Changes in public policy and lawbring about a re-definition or transformation of emergency management. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  4. Purposes Served by Recommended Reading Lists • Many, but not all, graduate programs use “recommended reading lists.” These lists are prepared by the graduate faculty themselves and are usually aimed at entering students. A reading list serves several purposes: • Itprovides both entering and matriculating students with a sense of the reading challenge they will be expected to face if they are to gain a mastery of the major literature of the field. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  5. Purposes Served by Reading Lists Continued • It represents a faculty consensus about what constitutes, at least minimally, major academic works in the field, or that best represent the knowledge base of the field itself. • It points students toward some of what they need to know in order to begin preparing for Masters’ or Doctoral preliminary or comprehensive field exams. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  6. Purposes Served by Reading Lists Continued • It helps characterize the nature of the graduate program for prospective students. • Reading lists also serve to characterize the core focus and array of specializations of undergraduate emergency management programs at the associate and baccalaureate levels. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  7. Top 50 Lists in Emergency Management • For faculties who elect to develop and use “recommended reading” lists, the norm is to develop a general consensus about the major works in the field, and to prepare a list of the “Top Books” in the field. • This Top Books list often ranges to 50 entries and usually encompasses a wide array of work that is in print or available from library repositories. • FEMA’s Emergency Management Higher Education Project has commissioned several experts to emulate what graduate faculties do, that is, develop a “Top 50” list. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  8. Top 50 Lists in Emergency Management continued • The Project called for commissioned experts to consult key practitioners and academics who work the field of emergency management. Many of these authorities already are emergency managers of some type, or are scholars with that field, or are people who work with major organizations that are fundamentally concerned about educating and credentialing emergency managers • Some collected this information from mailed surveys, first-person interviews, on-line surveys, or by consultation of suggested reading lists already being used in various programs. Some used a Delphi method; the Delphi Method calls for consultation of authorities in the field in order to elicit their advice and suggestions. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  9. Top 50 Lists in Emergency Management continued • Researchers for Body of Knowledge were asked to prepare on the basis of their findings, a listing of books, articles, reports, studies, manuals, “correspondence” courses, plans, standards, laws, regulations and other printed publications and documents. The lists were intended to help both emergency managers and students achieve a mastery of the key literature of the field. The works on the lists were also expected to help prepare them for academic course work in the field. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  10. Top 50 Lists in Emergency Management continued • The project commissioned five key groups representing different practitioner and educational communities. The individuals or groups were asked to conduct surveys and gather information from key academic and practitioner stakeholders. The studies they produced attempted to identify what these experts considered the core components of an emergency management body of knowledge. Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  11. Top 50 Lists in Emergency Management continued These groups were: • Emergency Management Practitioners (through the IAEM). • Administrators of “Emergency Management” programs at Associate Degree granting institutions of higher education. • Administrators of “Emergency Management” programs at the Bachelor Level. • Administrators of “Emergency Management” programs at the Graduate Level. • Hazard/Disaster Research Centers and Researchers Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project

  12. Body of Knowledge Researchers – Plenary Panel and Breakout Session • AD Survey – Don Beckering, State of Minnesota • BA Survey – Walter Greene, University of Richmond • MA Survey – Jennifer Wilson, North Dakota State University • IAEM Survey - Daryl Spiewak, International Association of Emergency Managers • Researchers - Claire Rubin, George Washington University • Integration - Richard Sylves, University of Delaware Sylves, Body of Knowledge Project