Formal critiques and after action reports from conventional emergencies tools for homeland security training and education
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The activities and tasks performed by firefighters when responding to emergencies caused by asymmetric threats to homeland security mirror the activities and tasks that firefighters regularly employ when responding to conventional emergencies. However, the learning opportunities created by conventional incidents are not routinely exploited for the purposes of preparing firefighters to respond to incidents of asymmetric origin. Instead, homeland security training and education is often conducted in a manner that is stand-alone and requires a dedicated budget. The policy analysis conducted assesses the similarities and differences between mitigation procedures and technical skills used when responding to incidents of similar nature but different origin and whether or not formal critiques and after action reports from conventional incidents can be used to effectively support the long-term sustainment of specialized training and education. Efficiency, process values, and robustness and improvability are the criterion used to conduct a modified cost-benefit analysis. The findings suggest that expanding the scope of formal critiques and after action reports from conventional incidents to include "what if" questions about potential incidents of asymmetric origin does facilitate the long-term sustainment of specialized training and education programs in a manner that capitalizes on adult and organizational learning theory principles.
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