International Fire Service Journal of Leadership and Management Annual Research Symposium

The International Fire Service Journal of Leadership and Management (IFSJLM) hosts its annual Research Symposium (RS) at the Summer IFSTA Validation Conference in Tulsa, OK. Both the symposium and the conference are sponsored by Fire Protection Publications, the world’s leading publisher of fire-related training and educational materials. Established in 2004, the IFSJLM Research Symposium provides an opportunity for national and international scholars to present papers on topics relevant to the fire service.

The Research Symposium, held from 7:30 am to 2:30 pm on the first non-holiday Saturday in July, precedes the Opening Session of the IFSTA Summer Validation Conference. The Symposium is free and open to the public. Conference attendees and anyone interested in learning more about fire science, fire service training, and current issues faced by fire and emergency services personnel, are encouraged to attend.

A number of the papers presented at the research symposiums have been subsequently submitted to the IFSJLM for peer review and publication. The IFSJLM accepts submissions of original academic research studies on topics that promote and inform best practices in the fire service.  More information on the peer review process and submission requirements can be found on this website.

NOTE: Although registration is free for attendees, symposium speakers are responsible for all expenses related to their participation in the event (travel, hotel, per diem, etc.).


Dr. John Granito Award for Excellence in Fire Leadership and Management Research

The presentation of the Dr. John Granito Award for Excellence in Fire Leadership and Management Research is an important part of the IFSJLM Research Symposium. This award is presented annually to an individual who has significantly advanced the fire leadership and management literature through their research efforts. It honors the many contributions and achievements of Dr. John Granito to the scholarly study of fire leadership and management. 

Until his retirement, Dr. Granito was one of the premier fire and public safety consultants in the United States. He participated in more than 400 fire department studies. Just a few of his many Fire, Rescue, and Emergency Services research projects include: Oklahoma State University Fire Protection Publications Line of Duty Death Reduction project (3 years); Centaur National Study (3 years); Research Triangle Institute/National Fire Protection Association/International City/County Management Association project (4 years); Fire Department Analysis Project (FireDAP) of the Urban Fire Forum (13 years); Combination Department Leadership Project, University of Maryland, Maryland Fire & Rescue Institute (4 years); and the Worcester Polytechnic/International Association of Fire Fighters/International Association of Fire Chiefs/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Fire Ground Performance Study. 

Dr. Granito also has strong ties to academia. He served in a number of academic positions for almost 30 years, including 16 years at the State University of New York at Binghamton. He is Professor Emeritus and Retired Vice President for Public Service and External Affairs at SUNY Binghamton, which is consistently ranked among the top public universities by U.S. News and World Report.  

Dr. Granito has published numerous articles, chapters, and technical papers. He served as co-editor of Managing Fire and Rescue Services, a book published by the International City/County Management Association in 2002, and he was a Section Editor of the 2008 NFPA Fire Protection Handbook®. 

Dr. Granito was the first recipient of the award that was established in his honor to recognize individuals who, like himself, have made outstanding contributions to the fire service and to academia. Each year the recipient of the Dr. Granito Award presents the Keynote Address at the annual IFSJLM Research Symposium. The Keynote Address is subsequently published as the lead article in the next volume of the International Fire Service Journal of Leadership and Management.


Award Recipients

2008     Dr. John Granito

2009     Dr. Denis Onieal

2010     Dr. Lori Moore-Merrell

2011     Dr. Edward Dickinson

2012     Dr. Daniel Madrzykowski

2013     Dr. Anne Eyre

2014     Chief Dennis Compton

2015     Dr. Denise Smith

2016     Dr. Sarah H. Jahnke

2017     Chief Ronald J. Siarnicki

2018     Dr. Jeff Burgess

2019     Dr. Gavin Horn

2022     Dr. Kenny Fent

2023     Dr. Steve Kerber