News for March 2010

Former CHS Director presents peer-reviewed Capabilities-based Planning article at Education Summit
March 8, 2010

Andy Cain, former interim director of the Center for Homeland Security, recently spoke at the 4th Annual Homeland Defense and Security Summit, held at Georgetown University February 24 and 25, 2010. Andy discussed the findings of a Center research effort conducted in 2008-2009 concerning the adaptation of Capabilities-based Processes by the State of Colorado. A major summit theme was Homeland Security/Defense Organization Processes and Management. Capabilities-based planning is a foundational aspect of Homeland Security management processes, and is used for providing improvement through collaboration, capabilities assessment, and risk mitigation. Capabilities-based planning is formally defined as planning, under uncertainty, to provide the means to accomplish a mission and achieve desired outcomes. Those "means", or capabilities, must be suitable for a wide range of threats and hazards while working within an economic framework that necessitates prioritization and choice. Capabilities are determined by assessing individual capabilities on a Target Capabilities List, and in Colorado this requires intense collaboration among counties, municipalities and the Homeland Security Regions. Andy told attendees about the corrective change in direction taken by Colorado in implementing homeland security organizational strategies, structures, policies and procedures. Andy authored the article with Kurt Johnson, who is currently the Associate Director for the Center. The authors' findings lead to conclusions about Colorado's beginning phase of transforming deficient homeland security strategy, incoherent organization, and fragmented planning processes into sound strategy, focused structure, and organized methods. Andy came out of retirement in 2007 to provide advisory leadership for creating and managing Center relationships with federal, state, local and tribal organizations; the private sector; and, nonprofit organizations concerning activities relevant to the Center’s mission areas.

The article may be accessed at the Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management website: