RiskPACC. Integrating risk perception and technological solutions to enhance response to natural hazards
The need to enhance individual and collective disaster resilience is becoming more urgent considering the increasingly complex and interconnected risks that arise from numerous natural, and not only hazardous, events. Many initiatives to encourage citizen participation in creating a resilient society exist, yet are typically fragmented. This fragmentation can result in unclear responsibilities for building disaster resilience to mitigate the impact of natural hazards. New emerging technologies can play a vital role in supporting the preparedness and response to disasters, however, there is limited understanding on how to implement them effectively during different phases of managing disaster risk. Traditionally, approaches used by Civil Protection Authorities (CPAs) to build resilience have focused on the managerial and technical aspects of ‘crisis’ response, whilst engagement with citizens about existing risks and preparedness measures have typically focused on one-way, top-down risk communication. At the same time, citizen and volunteer initiatives, often applying social media communication technologies, are created but are not necessarily coordinated with activities implemented by authorities. As a result, risk perceptions and actions of citizens, as well as the risk perceptions of citizens and CPAs remain frequently unaligned resulting in a Risk Perception Action Gap (RPAG). This work presents the overall objectives of RiskPACC project, which focuses on increasing the preparedness actions undertaken by citizens and narrowing the Risk Perception Action Gap (RPAG). The project follows a co-creation approach that will facilitate interaction between citizens and CPAs by evolving their collaboration into a two-way communication flow. By jointly identifying their needs and develop potential procedural and technical solutions, disaster resilience before, during and after the occurrence of natural and human induced hazards can be enhanced. RiskPACC facilitates a collaboration between citizens, CPAs, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), researchers and developers through seven case studies that will provide a live test bed to jointly design and prototype novel solutions. At the same time, a set of technological tools are also presented which include a framework and methodology to understand and close the RPAG, a repository of international best practice, and tooled solutions based on new forms of digital and community-centred data and associated training guidance. These are developed and integrated into an efficient platform that offer advanced information and co-operation to citizens and CPAs to enhance disaster risk management and enhance mitigation and adaptation actions to natural hazards.