The summer institute is composed of a two week course held in Washington D.C. from June 12-23, 2017

DRLS 6720 Disaster Policy and Operations is a 3-credit course that will address numerous questions:

  • Why does the response to some disasters succeed while others fail?
  • What disaster recovery practices result in rebuilding a more resilient community?
  • What are the attributes of an effective disaster operations capability?
  • What are the legal and statutory challenges encountered in response and recovery operations?
  • How is disaster policy developed and implemented?
  • How do I get a job with organizations working in domestic or humanitarian disasters?

This course will seek to answer these and other questions concerning disaster operations and policy development in the United States and around the world through a series of panel discussions with disaster policy makers and managers from government agencies, domestic and international NGOs, voluntary organizations, donors, and the business community.


Taking full advantage of being in Washington, DC, panelists from the below organizations will be invited to discuss how they develop the policies and programs that drive their disaster response, recovery and resiliency efforts and job opportunities with their organizations.

  • The World Bank
  • American Red Cross
  • US Chamber of Commerce
  • United Nations
  • Department of Health and Human Services
  • Save the Children
  • National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (NVOAD)
  • Resilience AmeriCorps
  • Contractors and others

Panel Topics

  • Voluntary agencies
  • INGOs
  • Local emergency management agencies
  • FEMA and other Federal agencies
  • State emergency management agencies
  • Federal humanitarian agencies
  • United Nations agencies
  • Public Health agencies
  • Donors and International Financial Institutions
  • Government contractors
  • Business Continuity Planning


A networking social event is planned where students will have an opportunity to interact with panelists in an informal setting.

Field Trips

Field trips to FEMA, The American Red Cross and the District of Columbia Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (HSEMA) are scheduled.


DRLS 6720 is taught by Professor George Haddow. George Haddow is a founding partner of Bullock and Haddow LLC, a disaster management consulting firm. Mr. Haddow was appointed to serve by President Bill Clinton for eight years in the Office of the Director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as the White House Liaison and the Deputy Chief of Staff. Mr. Haddow currently serves on the Adjunct Faculty at Tulane University’s Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy (DRLA) and at Tulane’s Homeland Security Studies program. He is a co-author of several university textbooks including: Introduction to Emergency Management (5th Edition), Introduction to Homeland Security (5th Edition), Disaster Communications in a Changing Media World (2nd Edition) and Living with Climate Change: How Communities are Thriving and Surviving in a Changing Climate.


Please e-mail for more information. 


Schedule an Appointment

Contact the Director of Recruitment and Student Affairs to schedule an appointment to discuss and/or apply for the summer institute in Washington D.C.

Accepted DRLA students do not need to submit a formal application for the summer institute. Please schedule an appointment to discuss the registration process.


Housing in Washington D.C.

Housing will be available at The George Washington University for students attending the Summer Institute, if desired. Students may also arrange their own housing. In choosing where to live, students are encouraged to consider cost, access to transportation, and safety.

Below are possible resources to utilize for locating housing:

Additional resources and housing searches can be found on Tulane's Liberal Arts Career Services Page for housing options in Washington DC.


Popular neighborhoods in and around DC:

Adams Morgan: Adams Morgan is a diverse urban area with many ethnic restaurants and markets. Moderately priced apartments are common but subject to high demand. Adams Morgan is located on the Red Metro Line at the "Woodley Park-Zoo/ Adams Morgan" and "Dupont Circle" stations. 

Alexandria: Alexandria is located 30-50 minutes outside of downtown D.C. and is home to many students, young adults, and families. The area includes a restored colonial district and a variety of restaurants, bars, and shops. Alexandria is about 30-50 minutes outside of D.C. on the Yellow Line at "Braddock Street" and "King Street" stations. 

Arlington: This area offers relatively low-priced housing options that include townhouses, high-rise apartments, and duplexes and is a popular area for undergraduate and graduate students. Arlington is near a variety of restaurants and shops, including Fashion Centre at Pentagon City. Arlington is located on the Blue, Yellow and Orange lines and is serviced by numerous Metro stops, and residents can expect a 20-45 minute commute to downtown D.C. 

Bethesda: Neighborhoods in Bethesda are at the Maryland border and are located 25-45 minutes on the Red Line from downtown D.C. Rental rates are relatively high, and housing opportunities are limited, but there may be options such as renting a room in a group house or renting a basement apartment in a private home. 

Capitol Hill: This area is at the epicenter of activity and encompasses the U.S. Capitol Building as well as other federal and governmental offices. Rental rates on Capitol Hill vary widely. While affordable and safe housing is available, it is rented out quickly. Capitol Hill is served by the Blue and Orange Metro lines at the "Capitol South" and "Eastern Market" stations. 

Cleveland Park: Cleveland Park is a residential area in northwestern Washington, D.C. known for its late-19th century homes and a commercial area along Connecticut Avenue, which features the Art Deco-style Uptown Theater. The Cleveland Park Metro stop on Connecticut Avenue is about a 15-minute ride on the Red Line to the center of D.C. 

Dupont Circle: Dupont Circle, south of Adams Morgan along Connecticut Avenue, offers a variety of housing opportunities that include high rises, apartment buildings, and rooms in private homes. The area is known for its lively urban and cultural life. The Red Line and Metro buses run directly through the area. 

NoMa: Named for its location North of Massachusetts Avenue, NoMa is a rapidly developing area just blocks north of the Capitol and is home to Union Station and NPR. There are many community events offered regularly in NoMa, like free summer concerts and an outdoor film festival, and the neighborhood is a few stops from the city center on the Metro's Red Line from the NoMa-Gallaudet University Station. 

Logan Circle: Located in northern D.C., Logan Circle encompasses two historic districts and is the city's last all-residential circle. Many late-19th century rowhouses have been converted to condos, and the neighborhood is known as one of the most LGTBQ*-friendly neighborhoods in D.C. 

Takoma Park: This diverse, artsy Maryland town is just north of D.C. and is located on the Red Line. There tend to be many group housing options in the area, making it a popular spot for young people.

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