A Systems Approach to Crisis Preparedness and Organizational Resilience

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Class Sessions

1. January 12. Introductions, Course Overview. Mini-cases: Survival, Crear Vale La Pena, Coca Cola Belguim

2. January 19. In the crisis. Prepare the Case Study: Mastitis at Lacteos del Pacífico. Read (1) Teaching note: Case Learning: How It Works, Why It’s Effective; (2) In Case of Emergency; (3) Ian Mitroff: The Essential Guide to Managing Corporate Crises, Chapter 1-2. Skim Ch. 3.

Topic Development Project: Choose a Potential Crisis and develop a course webpage about it.

3. January 26. Visit to PSE&G Nuclear Power Plant in Salem, NJ  (Bus to Leave Penn at 1 pm) Read material on (1) Normal Accidents; (2) High Reliability Organizations

4. February 2. A systems approach to crisis management. Scenes from Startup.com and Apollo 13. Read Mitroff, Chs 3, 4, 6 and 7. Skim Ch 5.

Choose a Course Project. Read Teaching Note: Freeman, Protocol for conducting organizational field research

5. February 9. Sustainability Ecological / Societal Resilience – – Read:  Diamond:  Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed

6 & 7. February 16. Delaware Emergency Management Systems Field Trip.(Bus to Leave Penn at noon). Introductions to Organizational Resilience: Read (1) Hamel and Valikangas, The Quest for Resilience” Harvard Business Review (2) Freeman, Systems Thinking and OR., Hirschhorn and Maltz “Moral Purpose and Organizational Resilience Sandler O’Neill & Partners, L.P. in the Aftermath of September 11, 2001.” Academy of Management Best Papers (3) Sutcliffe and Vogus “Organizing for Resilience” Ch 7 of Positive Organizational Scholarship.(4) Freeman, Beyond Systems Thinking: Resilience as strategy for safety & sustainability.

February 23. No class. Work on Course Project. Develop an interview protocol; try to conduct the first interview.

?. Crisis and Decision Making: Case Study: The Challenger Crisis and/or Cuban Missile Crisis. March 2.

? Positive psychology and positive organization scholarship / Individual Resilience – February 23. Read  Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, “Positive psychology” American PsychologistDutton & Quinn Foundations of Positive Organizational Scholarship. Chapter 1 of Positive Organizational Scholarship

?. Organizational Resilience II: Foundations – March 9. Read:  Meyer “Adapting to environmental jolts” Administrative Science Quarterly (treat this as a case study to be discussed)Wildavsky: Searching for safety. Chapters 4 and 5 (pgs: 77-123) 

 No Class: Arrange a Private meetings with Professor about your field research

? Economic Instability and Fin crisis. The Big Short

March 23.  Economic Instability and Organizational Resilience New York City –– Bus to Leave Penn for New York early morning

?. Individual Resilience Beyond Resilience: Drawing strength from adversity – – April 8. ReadFrankl: Man's Search for Meaning

Robert Schimmel : Cancer on five dollars a day (chemo not included): how humor got me through the toughest journey of my life.


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Date Page Created: Apr 20, 2011 Last Page Update: Jan 20, 2011