Understanding the role of interagency coordination in national-level maritime security
This study examines the most significant challenges in the practice of interagency coordination to support maritime security and offers potential collective action solutions to improve security, safety and resilience in the maritime commons. The central purpose of this study is to identify the major requirements to advance national-level maritime security policies—with a particular focus on interagency coordination—by conducting expert interviews, document reviews, and case studies.
The literature supporting maritime security policy and interagency cooperation covers military, cross-governmental, homeland security, academic, and commercial industry imperatives with a focus on the post 9-11 threat environment. Collective action theory provides the theoretical underpinning and analytical framework for a unique study of interagency coordination within the field of maritime security—making it highly relevant to the fields of homeland security and national strategy policy implementation.
The following themes are examined: (1) utility of collective action theory to support interagency coordination; (2) conditions under which interagency coordination supports maritime security objectives; (3) ability of maritime security players to implement policy under current constructs; and (4) remedies to close gaps in maritime transportation safety.
Major findings include: (1) lessons from this study in collective action theory and interagency coordination have practical utility and can be generalized to broader homeland security challenges; (2) further study is needed to add systems, leadership, and structures foci to collective action research; (3) awareness of America's economic dependence upon maritime commerce and the global supply chain is lacking; and (4) there is a need for a single national authority to implement existing policies, and strengthen maritime security resilience.
The most likely impact of this study will be to bring suggested remedies and systemic solutions to a fragmented and uncoordinated maritime security policy area within the U.S. maritime community of interest.
0617: Public administration
0630: Public policy