Regional Approaches Work--The Future is Regional
BY: Eric Holdeman | January 1, 2010
I'm a reader, or at least a "Scanner" of ArcNews, and ESRI publication. There is an article Portland, Oregon, Trailblazes a Successful Regional GIS in the current edition.
What first caught my eye was the word "Regional" in the the title of the article. While the federal government thinks of regional as multi-state, I see regional at the state and local level. It is also where I think the most progress can be made in the next decade. I just finished reading another article this morning about how small hospitals are either merging or affiliating with other larger hospital systems. One of the major reasons given was the cost of automation and electronic records. If we don't have more regional efforts in the next ten years there will be a significant separation of emergency management programs. The "Haves" and the "Have Nots" with larger more robust programs growing stronger and more technically advanced while the smaller jurisdictions fall further behind.
Back to the GIS article. I see some similarities and lessons to be learned from their work that rings a bell with me on what we tried to do in King County and the region when I was there as an emergency manager. These lessons include:
Good luck with your regional efforts in 2010. It is your future to make.
- You need champions, but it will take more than one person to make a regional approach work.
- You need a political agency/jurisdiction sponsor for the work and it will ideally be a regional government of sorts.
- Private sector involvement helps. When they see the benefit it breaks down some of the political walls that might exist between governments.
- Regional work takes time to bear fruit. The story told in the article starts in 1989.
- Sharing of information comes after trust is developed. Trust only comes after relationships are built between individuals and then organizations.
This is the first blog posting of 2010, only another 699 to go!
This article was printed from: http://www.emergencymgmt.com/emergency-blogs/disaster-zone/Regional-Approaches-Work--The-Future.html