Analysis of possible ways to improve resilience and protect the infrastructure: what alternatives have been suggested, and by whom?

Research Paper Topic Selection

Your research topic should be one of the 16 critical infrastructure sectors designated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (

Chose Energy Sector


Research Paper Initial Steps

After you have your critical infrastructure sector topic confirmed, carefully review what NIPP and ESF issues pertain to that selected infrastructure and use that information as a guide in the development of your research paper.

To ensure everyone starts to think about their research paper fairly soon, I’d like to approve an abstract in advance from each individual and group. Therefore, no later than end of Session #4 (October 8th), each individual must post to your assigned conference area in the “Research Paper Group Area” as well as the “Research Paper Area” of the Discussion page the following items:

  • Your approved CI(critical infrastructure) sector topic: Energy Sector
  • A one-paragraph abstract
  • Five scholarly references based on your preliminary research

Please notify me by email when you’ve made this required post.

Research Paper Outline

Your paper should follow this general outline:

  1. Problem statement: what makes this area a critical infrastructure?
  2. Current operational structure: how does this infrastructure operate?  What are the key nodes?
  3. Current organization structure: who are the key players and authorities in this area? What is the role of governments – Federal, state, and local? What industry or sector organizations are responsible for operations and infrastructure protection and how do they operate?  What NIPP and ESF issues appear to be significant?
  4. Vulnerabilities: what are the major vulnerabilities of the infrastructure?
  5. Analysis of possible ways to improve resilience and protect the infrastructure: what alternatives have been suggested, and by whom? What are the pros and cons of each – be sure to examine costs and feasibility.
  6. Your net assessment: summary and recommendations as to the best protective/ resilience strategy? Be sure to provide an analysis of why you have chosen this strategy and not the others.

Remember that you need to provide authoritative sources for all assertions of fact and options.

Research Paper Advice

This is a significant paper and will be a significant part of your grade; it should reflect corresponding effort on your part. Some cautions are in order:

  • Do not wait until the last minute to get started!
  • Do not waste time telling me that critical infrastructures are important. Tell me why your particular infrastructure is “critical” and what the issues are in protecting it.
  • Submit your paper on time. Points will also be deducted for lateness.
  • For the paper’s length, there are two criteria: Individual and Group. For an Individual research paper, the length requirement is 15 pages to meet 100% for the Length criteria. In addition, Group papers are allowed – up to a maximum of three (3) students cooperatively joining together to write and submit a Group Research Paper. In the case of a Group Research Paper, each additional person from a group perspective will add another 4 pages to receive full credit for the Length criteria. Therefore, if one’s Group Research Paper consists of two (2) students, then the Research Paper length for 100% credit increases to 16 pages. For a Group Research Paper consisting of three (3) students, the Research Paper length for 100% credit increases to 20 pages.
  • This minimum length does not include the title page; abstract; executive summary; separate figures, tables, graphs, pictures; or the list of references.
  • The paper should include a 200-350 word abstract and a brief conclusion – think as if you were writing for a professional journal.
  • The paper should use APA format: double-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font, one inch margins, page numbers with running head in upper right corner, section titles, citations, and references in accordance with the APA standard.
  • Assign your filename for the assignment as docx(or .doc) (with no spaces)
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