Managerial Cognition Counts: A Cognitive Perspective for Understanding Public Agencies’ Emergency Preparedness Efforts
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
Organizational decision-making and action-taking greatly rely on how managers make sense of the environment, interpret the problem and construct meaning accordingly. This paper takes a cognitive perspective and aims to understand what managerial cognitive factors are related to public agencies’ emergency preparedness efforts. Using a 2016 national survey of U.S. public transit agencies, I particularly examined how managerial perceptions of the risks (risk perception), of the action’s legitimacy (issue legitimacy) and of the organization’s capability (efficacy belief) are related to the agency’s emergency preparedness efforts. I used Poisson models to conduct the analysis. Results show that both managerial risk perceptions and efficacy beliefs of their organization’s capabilities are significantly correlated with their agencies emergency preparedness actions. The findings inform the literature on organizational disaster preparedness and offer insights on how to promote public agencies’ emergency preparedness efforts.