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Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management

Editor-in-Chief: Renda-Tanali, Irmak

Managing Editor: McGee, Sibel

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Volume 11, Issue 1

Hurricane Wilma and Long-Term Business Recovery in Disasters: The Role of Local Government Procurement and Economic Development

Christopher L. Atkinson / Alka K. Sapat
Published Online: 2013-11-08 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jhsem-2013-0002


Resilience and vulnerability of individuals is a common topic in disaster management literature, but business recovery – the ability of businesses to rebound from the shock of a disaster event – is an area that is not well examined. This article considers long-term business recovery in the aftermath of Hurricane Wilma in Palm Beach County, Florida, and seeks to discern the role and impact of county government operations on business recovery. This exploratory study shows that the accessibility and availability of contracting opportunities to the local business community in the hurricane’s aftermath, business vulnerability, and individual impacts from the disaster event can all affect business recovery. The results suggest that local governments can proactively respond to the risks posed by natural and other disasters by engaging in efforts to reduce vulnerability and increase resilience in their communities, while enhancing the transparency and accountability of governmental institutions.

Keywords: institutional culture; disaster management; business recovery and vulnerability; disaster recovery


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About the article

Corresponding author: Christopher L. Atkinson, Public Administration, Florida Atlantic University, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton, FL 33431, USA, Tel.: +1-5612972330, e-mail:

Published Online: 2013-11-08

Citation Information: Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Volume 11, Issue 1, Pages 169–192, ISSN (Online) 1547-7355, ISSN (Print) 2194-6361, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jhsem-2013-0002.

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