The Federal Emergency Management System in the United States: Past and Present

November 1990 (VOL. 8, NO. 3)

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The paper begins by providing a historical overview of wartime and peacetime emergency preparedness in the United States in terms of major historical trends and unresolved issues which preceded the establishment of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in 1979. With the unresolved issues serving as a historical backdrop, FEMA\\'s contemporary role in the federal emergency management system is then examined to see what progress toward their resolution is being achieved. The paper closes with a brief comment on what the historical evolution of federal emergency management in the United States suggests about what can and cannot be accomplished.