International Journal of Emergency Management (12 papers in press)
Pre-positioning facilities for collecting tents from communities for post-earthquake relief
by Jing-Xian Zhou, Zhi-Hua Hu, Xiang Li
Abstract: Pre-positioning facilities for collecting tents distributed in communities is critical to improve the efficacy of tent collection and supply in post-earthquake relief. This paper aims at a pre-positioning problem for facilities that collect the tents in communities by considering various earthquake scenarios. A bi-stage stochastic programming model is formulated for the facility location problem. The model minimises the economic costs and time-related penalty costs. Considering the effects of objective weights and known parameters on the solutions, five experiments were performed and analysed for studying the proposed model. A case illustrates the location problem for the facilities for collecting tents from communities in Pudong New District, Shanghai, China, in the relief of the Yaan earthquake.
Keywords: emergency logistics; location problem; stochastic programming; uncertain scenario; earthquake
Resilience from the real world towards specific organisational resilience in emergency response organisations
by John Van Trijp, Kees Boersma, Peter Groenewegen
Abstract: In this paper, we present a quick overview of six types of resilience to present a minimalistic sketch of the resilience landscape and show the definitions for resilience originally have a mechanistic point of view (bounce back after disaster has struck), in contrast to the present day approach, in which adaptive learning capabilities embedded in strong network-relationships are of vital importance for resilience. Eventually we focus on organisational resilience for emergency response organisations. Organisational resilience is of great importance to an emergency response organisation to cope adequately with outcomes before or after a crisis emerges. We briefly introduce a quantitative organisational resilience model for Dutch emergency response organisations (Safety Regions). We present studies describing and clarifying the variables and attributes based on this quantitative model, and draw relevant conclusions.
Keywords: organisational resilience; keystone vulnerabilities; situational awareness; adaptive capacity; quality; emergency response organisation; quantitative resilience model; emergency management; emergency response.
Social media in emergency management: exploring Twitter use by emergency responders in the UK
by Sophie Parsons, Mark Weal, Nathaniel O'Grady, Peter Atkinson
Abstract: Emergency Management practices are being reshaped by social media. Emergency responders are embracing social media to enhance communications during an emergency. The integration of social media into UK emergency management is ambigious, and it is uncertain as to whether it is an effective tool. Using a mixed methods approach, this research investigates the UK emergency responders use of social media for emergency management, focusing in particular on the UK winter floods of 2013/14. Furthermore, the effectiveness of the UK emergency responders social media activity is examined.
This research shows that the responders perceive social media as a useful tool to effectively deliver information to the public, although they do not appear to fully exploit it in an emergency. While the responders appear to predominantly post caution and advice, the results suggest that information about structures and utilities affected by an incident is most likely to engage an audience.
Keywords: UK floods; emergency management; social media; audience engagement; mixed methods; Twitter; emergency responders; emergency communications; local resilience forums; thematic analysis.
Peak performance: collaborative crisis management before and during international summits
by Sanneke Kuipers, Marij Swinkels
Abstract: This comparative case study probes into conditions for collaborative governance in the security organisation of international summits. The security of summits can be seen as a latent crisis, for which collaboration amongst a variety of stakeholders is necessary. Managing collaboration in preparation for latent crises is the focus of this paper. The case studies (the Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague in 2014 and the G20 in Toronto in 2010) reveal the importance of: inclusion of a diversity of relevant actors; symmetry of power and resources among actors; the outreach and legitimisation by network leaders; positive steps to repair antagonism between network partners and opposition against the summit; and the commitment of stakeholders to make the collaboration work. These findings highlight the importance of collaborative crisis management in preparing for and managing high profile security events.
Keywords: collaborative governance; summits; crisis management; security management; networks; coordination;.
Harnessing the power of metaphor: uncovering a hidden language of interoperability within the natural speech of emergency managers
by Tony McAleavy, Martin Rhisiart
Abstract: This study harnesses the non-literal communicative power of metaphor to enable quicker transferal of rich detailed information within and across emergency management organisations to promote multi-agency interoperability. A series of inductive semi-structured interviews with emergency managers from the UK and USA were completed. The collated data was then analysed with content and metaphorical analysis to create two theories. First, the Trivial Pursuit Pie, a conceptual metaphor that demonstrates the interoperability problem whereby intrinsic barriers within command and control restrict interoperability. This metaphor can be used as a learning tool to heighten awareness of barriers to multi-agency interoperability in both academic and practitioner environments. Secondly, the Theory of Interoperability Metaphors (TIM) provides a metaphor-based lexicon for interoperability grounded in the natural language of emergency managers. TIM stimulates interoperability through the recognition and usage of linguistic metaphors to develop shared meanings and understanding.
Keywords: emergency management; command and control; gold; silver and bronze; incident command system; interoperability; language; metaphor.
Simulation and improvement of personnel evacuation in living area of offshore platform
by Xinmei Zhang, Hao Sun, Chen Chen
Abstract: The living space of the offshore platform is relatively small and the staff density is generally large. It will cause the difficulty of evacuation in case of emergency. Combining the features of an offshore platform, the main influence factors of the personnel evacuation is proposed by qualify analysis. In the factors system, the controllable factors are found and quantitative simulation analysis is conducted to achieve the evacuation time and attendant problems in the nearby evacuation of the main deck living area under normal and typhoon conditions. The software Pathfinder is introduced to analyse the influence of different features of living area and personnel activities in the evacuation process. Through the simulation of the evacuation routes of people in different locations, the optimised evacuation route is determined. The evacuation time is shortened and the efficiency of the emergency evacuation will be improved.
Keywords: offshore platform; evacuation; pathfinder; simulation; optimization.
Field hospital site selection criteria: a Delphi consensus study
by Mohammad Javad Moradian, Ali Ardalan, Amir Nejati, Ali Darvishi Boloorani, Ali Akbarisari, Behnaz Rastegarfar
Abstract: The aim of this study was to survey systematically experts opinion on the criteria for the selection of field hospital sites, in order to identify optimum locations for stockpiling them in the preparedness phase of disaster management. A Delphi consensus technique, directed by a systematic review of the published articles on the permanent hospitals site selection, is adapted. A preliminary list of 40 criteria, obtained from a systematic review, was prepared. In the next stage, through expert panel review, only 15 criteria were considered appropriate for the field hospital site selection. Thereafter, a panel of 44 experts consented to participate. In total, out of 15 generated statements, eight statements gained consensus in round 3. The application of 'expert Delphi technique' resulted in consensus in listing the main criteria for field hospital site selection. The list would help policymakers to allocate optimum sites for maintaining field hospitals, thus increasing their efficacy.
Keywords: Delphi method; disaster management; field hospital; site selection.
How risk assessments by emergency management organisations fall prey to narrow framing
by David Etkin
Abstract: A review of risk assessments by a number of emergency management organisations shows that though ethical judgments are implicit in the methodologies and metrics used, they are not explicitly discussed. As a result these assessments lack transparency and suffer from narrow framing. It is proposed that the framing be broadened to integrate ethical decision-making with risk assessment and to frame the concept of risk more broadly, to create a more holistic and relevant decision-making framework.
Keywords: ethical decision-making; risk assessment; emergency management; framing.
Lessons on environmental health and disaster preparedness, response and recovery from the severe Kelantan flooding in 2014
by Mohd Firdaus Mohd Radi, Jamal Hisham Hashim, Mohd Hasni Jaafar, Rozita Hod, Norfazilah Ahmad, Azmawati Mohammed Nawi, Gul Muhammad Baloch, Rohaida Ismail, Nur Izzah Farakhin Ayub
Abstract: Flood is a natural disaster that occurs annually in Malaysia, causing devastating effects and damage to property and lives. This study looks into the environmental health and disaster preparedness, response and recovery management throughout the severe 2014 Kelantan flooding. We conducted two focus group discussions (FGDs) with healthcare, rescue and welfare workers involved throughout the disaster. The unprecedented severe flooding affected our environmental health and disaster management leading to communication and coordination problems along with challenges in transportation, water, food, relocation centres, sanitation and solid waste management. State level officers faced greater challenges in inter-agency communication, coordination and collaboration. District level staff faced more complications during disaster and emergency response. Recommendations include improved coordination, effective communication, improved human resource management, accessible early warning system, community empowerment and awareness, and prioritization of continuous environmental health services. We hope that these recommendations can improve our future disaster management.
Keywords: flood; environmental health; Kelantan; qualitative research.
Information seeking and evacuation decision-making in hypothetical hurricane events in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas
by Dean Kyne, William Donner, Arlett Lomeli
Abstract: This study analyses how information is accessed and gathered in hurricane and inland flooding prone areas. It includes analysis of passive vs. active information-seeking behaviours, various sources of information, including government, personal judgement, and friend of family recommendations. The study also assesses how demographic, risk information, and living condition factors influence evacuation decision-making in five hypothetical hurricane events Categories 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas. Findings suggest that information-seeking frequency can increase the odds of making a decision to evacuate in the event of Categories 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 hurricanes. Similarly, active information-seeking behaviour is positively associated with the evacuation decision in the event of Category 4 and 5 hurricanes. Information sources from personal judgement show negative relationship with evacuation decisions in all except in Category 5. Information sources based on family/friends show positive association with evacuation decisions in Category 4 and 5. The findings highlight the importance of active information sources, such as social media, frequent interactions with friends or family members, and active information-seeking behaviors in Categories 4 and 5.
Keywords: information-seeking behaviour; evacuation decision-making; hurricane; Rio Grande Valley.
Exploring the status of community information and training for disaster preparedness and mitigation practices: an appraisal of the 2013 flash flood in Uttarakhand
by Asif Khan, K.M. Baharul Islam, Archan Mitra
Abstract: The occurrence of natural disasters has become a major global problem. It poses serious threats to the concept of sustainable development. Over the last two decades, more than 1.3 million people and nearly two trillion dollars have been lost due to natural disasters. The paper discusses the status of disaster mitigation information system during the Uttarakhand disaster June 2013. The researchers in this paper have discussed the status of such practices taken by both Government and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) from a qualitative perspective. The Software Package for Social Science (SPSS) software was used for the analysis and the results were presented in descriptive statistical format. As many as (n=1500) respondents were interviewed, out of which 80% respondents were ill-informed. Over 80% respondents were found to be untrained to respond in a disastrous situation. Hence, the researchers have proposed the use of better information and communication mediums with the assistance of public and private partnership (PPP model) to deal with disastrous situations in the future along with some indigenous methods.
Keywords: community information; disaster training and preparedness; disaster mitigation; public-private partnership; information and communication; Uttarakhand flash flood 2013.
Canada’s 2016 Fort McMurray Wildfire Evacuation: Experiences of the Muslim Community
by Aaida A. Mamuji, Jack L. Rozdilsky
Abstract: This study explores issues faced by the largest visible minority group impacted by the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfire evacuation - the Muslim community. Through qualitative methods and deep analysis of data gathered, challenges and opportunities that are relevant for both improving emergency preparedness within the Muslim community, and for improving the provision of emergency social services writ large, are discussed. The overall goal of this study is to give voice to the experiences of the Muslim community, and to highlight specific accommodations that could have been beneficial. While in recent years, research efforts have been taken to better improve the needs of First Nations and Indigenous groups in Canada during wildfire disasters, this work is a starting point for considering other portions of Canada’s diverse communities.
Keywords: wildfire; evacuation; wildfire evacuation; emergency response; emergency social services; disaster management; Fort McMurray; Canada; Muslim community; deep analysis; visible minority; vulnerability; lived experience.