In Case of Emergency, Read This Blog

In Case Of Emergency, Read Blog

A Citizen’s Eye View of Public Preparedness

QHSR’s Final Online “Dialogue” Ends Sunday — Log On Now Or Forever (Or At Least For Four Years) Hold Your Piece Of Advice For The Department Of Homeland Security

October 1st, 2009 · 1 Comment

On October 4th, it will be 10/4 and out for the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) interesting online experiment, A National Dialogue on the Quadrennial Homeland Security Review. The third and last round began this week and will run through Sunday.

The Dialogue tool was developed by DHS with the National Academy of Public Administration to help solicit input from stakeholders, including the public, on the “Quadrennial Homeland Security Review (QHSR). The QHSR is a congressionally-mandated process which will help guide the nation’s homeland security policies over the next four years. The final report is due on December 31st.

As part of the Dialogue, participants can weigh in on five areas – “Counterterrorism,” “Borders,” “Immigration,” “Disasters,” and “Risk Assessment”. In this round, users are being asked to comment particularly on the “objectives” and “outcomes” that are laid out for each. This public input through the Dialogues has complemented the work of the Department’s own QHSR study groups.

To kick off the third round, DHS held a ‘blogger roundtable’ yesterday with Deputy Assistant Secretary (Strategic Plans) Alan Cohn. There were similar roundtable briefings at the beginning of the first and second Dialogues as well.

During the second round which took place earlier this month, there were 11,000 unique visitors (up from 8,000 in the initial round) who posted 2000 comments, 4000 ratings and 400 ideas, according to Cohn. “We’re extremely happy with the level of public engagement, and we really would like that type of engagement to continue [in the third Dialogue].”

DHS Deputy Assistant Secretary Alan Cohn Answers A Question On The "Blogger Roundtable" Teleconference by you.


The “Disasters” category (which is formally titled, “Preparing for, Responding to, and Recovering from Disasters”) has evolved through the Dialogue process with the concept of “resilience” becoming fully front and center to the vision, goals, objectives and outcomes. The challenge is fleshing out what “resilience” is, what it means for all the various stakeholders, and how to get there. The Dialogues, according to Cohn, is one way to include the nation in the process of answering those questions. In fact, the entire online project is the most concrete manifestation yet of DHS’ Secretary Janet Napolitano’s oft-expressed commitment to involve the public in making homeland security a “shared responsibility.”

Cohn said that most of the online contributors to the Dialogue have been from some part of the broad homeland security community but that many of them also commented in areas where they are not experts but rather just members of the general public  (ie. dealing with airport security, border crossings).

Other bloggers participating in the ’roundtable’ included: Rich Cooper, Security Debrief; Martin Jones, National Terror Alert; Tracy Johnson, Booz Allen Hamilton; Robin Paoli, Gov Loop; Max Cacas, Federal News Radio; and Chris Bellavita, Homeland Security Watch.

To participate in the third round, go to

These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • Technorati

Tags: Department of Homeland Security · Media · Preparedness Events

1 response so far ↓

Leave a Comment