Date of Award

1994

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Community Planning

First Advisor

Howard H. Foster, Jr.

Abstract

The end of the Cold War presents a unique opportunity to reinvent American society. In the wake of the Cold War both the problems faced and the resources available to address them are different from those associated with past postwar adjustments. Unfortunately, the adjustment to the end of the war will bring hardship to many. The hardship experienced by defense dependent firms, communities and individuals could delay or halt the transformation of American society.

The study presents an introduction to the issue of post-Cold War defense economic adjustment. It defines a number of techniques for adjustment, presents new domestic considerations for defining American national security as well as identifying the dangers presented by regional conflicts and instability. Among the domestic threat are the cradle-to-grave cycle of poverty, a crumbling national infrastructure, a failure to invest in productive capacity, a failing educational system, and various threats to the environment. Adjustment techniques need to both provide for post-Cold War national security and facilitate a smooth transition of resources once used for fighting the Cold War to other pressing national concerns with out causing an extended period of hardship to those once dependent on defense spending.

The study ends with a conceptual plan for adjustment which provides transition strategies to be used by negatively effected firms, communities and individuals for coping with the negative results of reduced defense spending resulting from the end of the Cold War. The plan will also include conversion strategies to be used as America moves toward a new set of post-Cold War national priorities.

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