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Organisational resilience

Developing the Field of Organisational Resilience- How Organisations Respond to the Threat and Actuality of Extreme Events


This research theme builds upon a pilot study (Sullivan-Taylor and Wilson, 2006) and current research which examines ‘the extent to which organisations are prepared for managing the threat or actuality of extreme events’.

The National Security Strategy of the UK (2008) identifies that ‘security’ is not a narrowly defined issue that can be dealt with by organisations in isolation. Security is given a wider definition to refer to the myriad of uncertainties produced by extreme events (eg; severe flooding, pandemic disease, terrorist attacks). The aim of this research theme is to identify ways in which organisational resilience might be embedded and enhanced, not least through the transfer of best practice within and between sectors. The desire to make inter-organisational relationships central to core business practices can be seen in the Civil Contingencies Act (2004) which requires private sector/Critical National Infrastructure organisations to co-operate with emergency services and local authorities in the context of extreme events. This research theme looks to examine the impact of the threat and actuality of extreme events with colleagues in both academic (inter-departmental and inter-institutional) and practitioner forums (ranging from business to the policy environment). Engagement with non-academic users will be integral and details about the research, and events linked to the research, will be accessible on the SOLAR website. The programme of engagement activities will lead to the development of a consortium and potentially research centre funding.

We plan to develop networks through an online forum and programme of high profile Warwick based events which would further extend the position of SOLAR as the academic ‘leader’ in the area of organisational resilience.

Academics involved- Bridgette Sullivan-Taylor and Layla Branicki (WBS)






SOLAR- Unit for Strategy, Organisational Learning and Resilience

Presentation from WISI away day, July 2008(Powerpoint Presentation)