The Johns Hopkins University
March 1, 1999
Institutional Crisis. The Committee adopted the following as its working definition of an institutional crisis or emergency: "An event that  disrupts normal operations of the university or poses a serious threat to persons, property, or the university's reputation,  requires a quick or immediate response and coordinated, efficient management, and  requires a response with procedures and resources whether human, material or logistical--beyond the capability of the organizational unit or facility where the event has occurred."
Distinction Between "university-wide crisis " and "local crisis." The Committee feels compelled to point out a critical, enduring distinction that must be made between crises (or emergencies) as they are currently defined by the Committee and which will require some sort of university-wide response, and crises (or emergencies) which will primarily be addressed locally by the divisions and departments with the responsibilities for the operations in which these events occur. The members of the Committee, and its supportive subcommittees, believe that this distinction is an important one and will decrease the likelihood of unnecessary oversight and possible harmful interference with normal operations in the operating divisions and departments by the proposed Crisis Response Team. With regard to roles, boundaries, and operating procedures, clarity will be important to maintain as the new crisis management systems are designed and implemented in the University.
1. Civil disruptions [sniper, terrorists, violent demonstrations, etc.]
3. Disruption of leadership by criminal act
6. Flood [possible partial isolation of campus, though major impact would be on the surrounding community]
8. Isolated catastrophic structural failure
9. Severe winter storms
10. Transportation accidents [airplane crash, bus accident, train derailment, etc.]
11. Technological disasters [explosions, hazardous material spills, radiation, power outages, etc.]
12. Water contamination [public supply]
13. War [nuclear, biological, chemical exposure]
14. Windstorms [usually preceded by advance warning]
Typology of Crises and Response Levels. Using Chart-1 as a guide, the president, the provost, and the senior vice president for administration have been asked to determine what they desire their roles to be in the management of a university- wide crisis. Such input is crucial for clarifying of roles of the senior administration, the Crisis Response Team, and the standing Committee on Crisis Management.
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