This qualitative research aims to explain the impact of interoperability and organisational culture across regulatory, emergency service, law enforcement, military (RESLEM) organisations on joint emergency and disaster operational responses. The objective is to understand how such operations unfold from the perspective of RESLEM front-line and operational leaders to identify opportunities for improved interoperability, collaboration, and success in future complex emergencies.
Interoperability across regulatory, emergency service, law enforcement, military (RESLEM) agencies, is essential for the delivery of effective and efficient major emergency and disaster responses. Increasingly, multi-jurisdictional and inter-agency operations are required to address complex crisis situations. The RESLEM coalitions assembled to respond are commonly formed at short notice in an ad hoc fashion. In such circumstances, a lack of trust coupled with an inability to co-function undermines preparation, risk mitigation, response, and recovery. The 2019/20 Black Summer Australian bushfire crisis and the 2022 Australian east coast floods serve as prime examples.
Achieving an understanding of how RESLEM organisational cultures interact and manifest during complex emergencies links directly with the Centre’s research program in relation to evidence-informed policy, strategy, and foresight. The capacity to determine, measure and leverage interoperability risk and success factors enhances national and regional disaster preparation and resilience. It also reinforces diplomatic ties and strengthens disaster and emergency cooperation with our allies and partners across the Asia Pacific region.