GAO Report 09-811: Disaster Recovery

Monday, August 31, 2009

Experiences from Past Disasters Offer Insights for Effective Collaboration after Catastrophic Events

Because of the many stakeholders involved in recovery, including all levels of government, it is critical to build collaborative relationships. Building on GAO’s September 2008 report which provided several key recovery practices from past catastrophic disasters, this report presents examples of how federal, state, and local governments have effectively collaborated in the past. Toward that end, GAO has identified four collaborative practices that may help communities rebuild from the Gulf Coast hurricanes as well as future catastrophic events:

  • Develop and communicate common goals to guide recovery;
  • Leverage resources to facilitate recovery;
  • Use recovery plans to agree on roles and responsibilities and;
  • Monitor, evaluate, and report on progress made toward recovery.