How a More Networked Approach to Public Safety can Improve Our Ability to Navigate a Complex Threat Environment
“The Soft Changes” Today’s threat environment is complex. Terrorist entrepreneurs are enabled by technological innovations (including advances in communication and secure messaging technologies) to target privately owned establishments with increasingly deadly results. This requires a more collaborative and integrated approach to public safety, one in which the private sector, state and major urban area fusion centers, and state HSAs are adequately empowered and linked at the community level. Such horizontal linkages are critical to accessing and incorporating non-traditional sources of information and creating new partnerships with public health, education, religious, and civic leaders to utilize their unique perspective and strengths.
Implementing the networked practices this paper has examined will require consistent and attentive leadership to overcome bureaucratic inertia and cultural resistance to change that is resident in many public sector organizations. For example, as stated previously, operating from a “case-making” mindset can limit the type of information that a law enforcement official considers relevant. Federal intelligence and law enforcement also experiences constant leadership turnover which, combined with the human tendency to change the way your predecessor did business, can make it challenging to maintain cultural and bureaucratic consistency over time. . . .