Hurricane Katrina: An evaluation of governmental leadership and the disaster surrounding the city of New Orleans

by Cotton, Gregory L., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2009, 151 pages; 3350239


Hurricane Katrina came ashore and laid waste to 90,000 square miles of land, killing more than 1,300 people, leaving more than 750,000 homeless, and all but completely destroying the City of New Orleans. A House Select Committee, professional associations, public bodies, university scholars, and journalists have made numerous diagnoses of what went wrong prior to the storm making landfall and during relief efforts. This study evaluated the leadership actions and behaviors of key government officials surrounding the Hurricane Katrina disaster. These actions and behaviors were extracted from official hearings, interviews, as well as lessons learned literature from governmental agencies. A simple frequency weighting process determined which leadership model or models were most dominant during each specific phase (prior to, during, and after) of the disaster, as measured against the five leadership models (situational, adaptive, transformational, transactional, and contingency) chosen for this study. The second level of analysis was designed to determine which leadership models would have been most appropriate prior to, during, and after Hurricane Katrina, which was based on the literature associated with actual successful crisis management outcomes. The overall goal of this study was to create new knowledge to better understand what leadership model or models may be most effective prior to, during, and after the next large-scale crisis.

AdviserJoseph Avella
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsManagement; Public administration
Publication Number3350239

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