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Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management

Editor-in-Chief: Renda-Tanali, Irmak, D.Sc.

Managing Editor: McGee, Sibel, Ph.D.

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A Framework for Sustainable Port Security

John R. Harrald
  • The George Washington University
/ Hugh W. Stephens
  • GWU
/ Johann Rene vanDorp
  • GWU
Published Online: 2004-01-28 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2202/1547-7355.1029

As the United States attempts to improve the security of the homeland, the thousands of vessels, millions of containers, and millions of passengers entering the country each year have been identified as major sources of vulnerability. Ports are the primary connection between the U.S. and the world economy. Any interventions that increase the security of ports must not only be effective, they must be economically sustainable. This paper is based on the premise that a port is best analyzed as a complex system consisting of a set of loosely coupled economic systems. The evolution of these systems has been driven by economic efficiency, and as ships and facilities became more unique in their design, they became functionally and physically segregated from each other. The paper demonstrates that by using a risk management approach sets of potentially effective security interventions that intervene at all points in the event chain can be identified. These interventions can then be evaluated for both effectiveness and economic impact. If security interventions cause serious harm to the systems they serve, the terrorists will have achieved one of their primary objectives.

Keywords: port security; risk management; terrorism

About the article

Published Online: 2004-01-28

Citation Information: Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, ISSN (Online) 1547-7355, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2202/1547-7355.1029. Export Citation

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