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Beyond Contingency Planning: Towards A Model Of Crisis Management

Denis Smith

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This paper reviews the central contributions to the crisis management liter ature, addresses its various dimensions and details the major phases within which crises occur. The paper seeks to develop a schematic model for crises and concludes by advocating that management needs to acknowledge the lim itations of its contingency planning in order to allow for more effective deci sion making. The model suggests that there are three phases within a crisis: the precipitation phase in which the potential for a crisis is created, the operational phase of the crisis, and the post-crisis phase. The resultant model provides a framework for the subsequent analysis of crisis events.