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Sociology Colloquium, 4/21/2021

Time Will Tell: An Organizational Model of Sponsorship of Business Recovery After Disaster

Dr. Patricia Thornton and Dr. Maria Watson, Texas A&M UniversityDr. Patricia Thornton Colloquium

We develop a general model of when and how aid organizations respond to businesses recovering from natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and pandemics. In particular, we examine two main factors underlying the ability of organizations to respond to natural disaster: the amount of resources for allocation and the timing of resource allocation. Disaster environments are characterized by institutional fragmentation and time compression in which a variety of actors guided by different institutional logics must work together under extraordinary time constraints, as distinct from normal times. We suggest that decision makers’ interpretation of resource allocation under these conditions depends on their specialization in institutional logics that shape their capabilities to interpret and offer response. The merits of a disaster loan program, for example, will be evaluated differently depending on whether or not decision-makers have specialization in state, community, or market institutional logics. Reigning urban planning models of business recovery after natural disaster assume institutional homogeneity and time compression based on clock time. We contribute to institutional theory and urban planning research by extending this baseline model to examine cultural and sequence-based time. This elaborated model generates four responses: inaccessible resources, inadequate resources, delayed resources, and optimal resources. This model has useful implications for public policy and the strategic management of natural disasters because research shows that disaster assistance for business recovery is not necessarily efficient or effective in spite of increasingly vast amounts of financial resources allocated.

April 21, 2021
Wednesday, 12–1:30pm
Zoom session
Meeting ID: 947 5835 6413
Passcode: 436312

If you cannot join with video, you can connect to the Zoom session via phone: 1–346–248–7799