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manage limited resources effectively and deal with various


Based on the perspectives of federalism and hazard policies

in the U.S., it is recommended that governments engaging in EM

adopt a shared governance approach and work jointly to deal

with disasters (Mushkatel & Weschler, 1985). Central authority

plays a role on providing monetary support and policy

guidelines while local jurisdictions offer “compelling advantages

in terms of tailoring the provision of certain public services to

local tastes” (Oates, 2004: 44). McEntire and Dawson (2007)

further argued that although a multi-level political structure

brings redundancy in implementing policy, it allows disaster-

stricken communities to seek assistance from nearby

jurisdictions or from state and federal agencies. These

characteristics of federalism give local governments

opportunities to vertically connect with different levels of the

government to seek monetary support and other resources when

facing disasters.

Emergencies are often not confined by jurisdictional

boundaries (McGuire & Silvia, 2010). Floods, earthquakes,

tornadoes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters usually cause

damages across administrative borders. Local governments with

similar geographies, climates, or socioeconomic status

particularly need to share a cross-border view to organize their

EM plans. Therefore, cross-jurisdictional collaboration is

necessary when dealing with natural or man-made disasters.

IV. Three Types of Local Emergency

Management Collaboration

In the case of local EM, flexible collaboration in both

vertical and horizontal contexts is essential, especially when

responding to large-scale disasters (Drabek, 1990). This study

focuses on three types of collaboration and studies their