Horizontality and Canada's Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness: a case study

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Rountree, Marina
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This thesis provides a case study of the Government of Canada's former Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness (OCIPEP) through the lens of horizontal management (part of New Public Management theory). This study demonstrates that the effective use of horizontal management (horizontality) may reduce fragmentation occurring when the goal of critical infrastructure protection requires organizations to work cross-jurisdictionally and in partnerships. This need to collaborate is due to the ownership problem: over 85 per cent of Canada's critical infrastructure is owned by organizations other than the federal government. Research methods include a background survey of literature on critical infrastructure protection, horizontal management and horizontality, and new public management; and interviews using a snowball sample of eight subjects who held various positions within OCIPEP to better understand what the organizational structure appeared to be from within the organization. The research concludes that OCIPEP was not given the resources necessary to successfully fulfil its mandate. Results include the need for administrative and managerial support for horizontal endeavours, to encourage a "cultural context" of horizontality, as there are many organizational barriers to successfully using horizontality and collaborative methods. There were areas of success for OCIPEP, but more areas of weakness. Recommendations include additional study of the organization, a shift into a better-supported organization (which was accomplished with OCIPEP's inclusion into Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada), and clear delineation of roles between the Government of Canada and the owners of the critical infrastructure.
critical infrastructure, horizontal management, horizontality, OCIPEP, critical infrastructure protection, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada