Document Type


Publication Date




Publication Title

International Journal of Public Administration




Adaptation to sea level rise (SLR) requires coordination among local, state, and federal entities and collaboration across governments, nonprofits, businesses, and residents. This coordination and collaboration are reflected in institutional arrangements associated with a whole-of-government and whole-of-community approach to regional adaptation. This study analyzes the development of an interlocal agreement (ILA), the Hampton Roads Sea Level Rise Preparedness and Resilience Intergovernmental Planning Pilot Project (the Pilot Project), as an example of such an arrangement. This study assesses how factors throughout three phases of ILA development (initiation, implementation, and execution) influence outcomes and effectiveness. Drawing upon participant observation, document analysis, survey of participants, and interviews with key informants this study identifies factors that facilitate effective regional adaptation to SLR (impetus, agreement) and factors that hamper adaptation efforts (funding, ease of delivery), and offers insight into the complexities of institutional collective action to address contentious and challenging issues such as SLR.


© 2021 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC

This is an author's original manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in International Journal of Public Administration on January 31, 2021, available at


0000-0003-3599-1417 (Yusuf), 0000-0002-3672-0275 (Nicula), 0000-0002-1574-5238 (Jordan), 0000-0002-8269-3626 (Considine), 0000-0001-5431-9314 (Saitgalina), 0000-0002-0472-3068 (Behr)

Original Publication Citation

Yusuf, J.-E., Nicula, J. G., St. John, B., Jordan, M. M., Covi, M., Considine, C., Saitgalina, M., & Behr, J. (2021). Developing an institutional arrangement for a whole-of-government and whole-of-community approach to regional adaptation to sea level rise: The Hampton Roads pilot project. International Journal of Public Administration, 1-27.