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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-SA | Phase: SEC-2011.6.1-1 | Award Amount: 2.20M | Year: 2012

Our objective in this project is to explore and compare relevant cultural phenomena and legal determinations of civil security across Europe, taking into account the existing significant differences between countries and regions. We start by creating a framework that can be used to carry out a comparative analysis. We develop definitions of security effectiveness and efficiency that can be put into practice with the available data and in the context of the widely varying security systems in Europe. We consider a representative sample of selected countries, embodying the diverse regional security architectures, with regard to the sharing of responsibilities between public and private bodies and the role that citizens and their awareness play in regional security architectures. We study how the identified differences affect the effectiveness and efficiency of different kinds of security systems in these countries and regions. We determine what works and what doesnt work with regard to particular types of risks, crises and disasters, and countries and regions. Finally we give specific advice, based on consensually agreed upon objective indicators and analysis, about what changes or modifications might result in improvements to the security situation in regions or countries where this is desired by EU policymakers. Consequently, we achieve the expected impact of giving the EU a clear view of which kind of systems that could successfully enhance the security in certain regions, and contribute and give EU-added value to the debate concerning not one security fits all.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2012.4.1-2 | Award Amount: 4.33M | Year: 2013

Complex emergencies such as earthquakes, flooding, bombings, and the recent massacre in Utya (Norway) can seriously affect entire populations and rip nations apart, with long-term psychosocial consequences impacting the most vulnerable as well as the helpers for years following the disaster. A large number of high quality European guidelines and tools for psychosocial support interventions in crisis management already exist and have been developed during the last two decades. OPSIC will build on this work by identifying gaps and assessing best practices and develop a new innovative comprehensive operational guidance system (OGS), which will serve as the operational interface between the existing guidelines and the practical intervention tools and methods. This interface is currently missing and hinders the effective operationalization of and compliance with the guidelines in practice. Based on new research and analysis of PSS guidelines, best practices and the long-term psychosocial impact of crisis, OPSIC will design and develop an web based comprehensive operational guidance system that will operate as a common shared platform and single point of reference for PSS in crisis management. The OGS will be validated through simulations tests in three countries with crisis managers, first responders, volunteers and possible victims and evaluated according to selected key performance indicators. Subsequently, the OGS will be demonstrated for a governmental end-user and a road map for implementation of the OGS into the end-user protocols will be prepared. For the development of the guidance system, OPSIC will focus on all four phases of crisis management; prevention, preparedness, response and recovery, and relate these to the following target groups; - crisis managers, intervention forces, first responders, volunteers, victims and indirectly affected community. The expected impact of the project is in accordance with the call to improve psychosocial preparedness of the


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: SEC-2009-4.3-03 | Award Amount: 3.84M | Year: 2010

The INDIGO project aims to research, develop and validate an innovative system integrating the latest advances in Virtual Reality, Simulation and Artificial Intelligence in order to homogenise and enhance both the operational preparedness and the management of an actual complex crisis. It will enable: * the 3D interactive and realistic visualisation of the complete crisis environment, including data coming from the field, simulation results, and building interiors. * the simulation of different evolving scenarios for planning, training, and anticipating future states and impending developments during operations, and analyse events after the crisis. * the simultaneous training of decision makers, crisis managers as well as first responders and emergency field units that will be influenced by the simulated scenario and that will reciprocally influence its evolution. * the simultaneous involvement of multiple participants, thanks to its distributed architecture, while offering a unique pictorial way of sharing and communicating complex knowledge across organisation boundaries. In addition, INDIGO will propose a European emergency symbology reference for 2D/3D maps. This will fill an important gap by offering a common visual reference that can be used across Europe to facilitate the immediate and general understanding of the situation, thus improving decision making across organisational boundaries. The definition of the functional specifications of the system will be driven by the analysis of the needs of real end-users participating in the project as partners or involved in the INDIGO User Group. These organisations will test and validate the outcomes of the project with real-world scenarios and multiple emergency organisations. By the end of the project a packaged system integrating all the proposed technologies will have been developed and provided to them under two versions for purpose of validation and refinement of needs and specifications.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: ENV.2009.4.2.3.2 | Award Amount: 1.68M | Year: 2010

At the heart of this project lies the development, trialling and operationalisation of a tool (STAVE), designed to support the work of policy-making for sustainability in real-world settings. The tool will support processes of knowledge brokerage, promoting the appropriate application of existing research findings, and the generation of new knowledge which is focused on specific policy objectives. In substantive terms, the project responds to recent work on sustainable consumption, which has provided compelling arguments about the difficulties entailed in seeking to address anthropogenic climate change by attempting to shift patterns of consumer behaviour. The project will take the form of a series of collaborative problem-focused interventions with policy-makers which will engage with their current work in these areas. STAVE will allow these policy-makers to examine the nature and validity of assumptions about human sensibilities, reasoning and action that are incorporated into the development of policy. The project will yield detailed guidance on how best to utilise STAVE across a variety of organisational and policy-specific environments. It will also generate important insights into the mechanisms by which different sources of knowledge are utilised in the practical activity of policymaking; and into the nature of lay citizens practical reasoning and everyday activities, as they relate to the sustainability of their patterns of consumption.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2012.6.1-3 | Award Amount: 5.44M | Year: 2013

The ATHENA project brings together major user communities with world leading experts in crisis management and experts and technology developers of mobile and social media use and development. The goal of the ATHENA project is to deliver two major outputs that will enable and encourage users of new media to contribute to the security of citizens in crisis situations and for search and rescue actions: First, a set of best practice guidelines for LEAs, police, first responders and citizens for the use of new media, supporting tools and technologies in crisis situations Second, a suite of prototype software tools to enhance the ability of LEAs, police, first responders and citizens in their use of mobile and smart devices in crisis situations This project will explore how the huge popularity of new communication media, particularly web-based social media such as Twitter and Facebook, and the prolific use of high-tech mobile devices, can be harnessed to provide efficient and effective communication and enhanced situational awareness during a crisis. The ATHENA system is a crisis communication and management system that encourages and enables the public to participate, in an ethical way, in the process of emergency communication to contribute to the security of the citizen in crisis situations and for search and rescue actions. ATHENA makes use of new social media and high tech mobile devices to efficiently and effectively acquire, analyse and disseminate crisis information and intelligence that is appropriate and useful to LEAs/police/first responders and the public.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.2.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.15M | Year: 2014

The concentration of government buildings within urban environments has become a source of serious security vulnerability. Administrators and security experts face a variety of evolving threats that are hard to anticipate. To secure a government building against multiple threats while maintaining a minimal level of transparency and accessibility requires an integral security approach. It demands interdisciplinary collaboration between different experts from different domains. Currently, there is no efficient method or tool that allows the experts of different stripes to efficiently design, evaluate and implement appropriate security concepts. Existing ones do not allow for the effective creation, analysis, assessment, and sharing of security concepts that will help government administrators provide a secure environment for personnel and citizens. The VASCO project addresses two important objectives. First, it will design, implement and evaluate an innovative IT tool that will enable security professionals and administrators to jointly formulate, test, and adjust security concepts and measures in a virtual environment. This provides a cost-effective and risk-free environment in which to devise an evidence-based, all-risk approach for the protection of government buildings. Second, it will produce a knowledge and best practice database, which captures dynamic and visual reference scenarios created with the VASCO system. To accomplish these aims, the project will adopt an iterative methodology that enables the constant involvement of its world-class security and crisis management experts, assisted by a solid and open user group, during the whole project. It makes use of the latest advances in interactive visualisation, simulation, crisis management, and artificial intelligence to provide end-users with a new tool that significantly improves the way in which they collaborate to secure critical government assets both at home and abroad.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: NFRP-12-2015 | Award Amount: 3.05M | Year: 2015

HoNESt (History of Nuclear Energy and Society) involves an interdisciplinary team with many experienced researchers and 24 high profile research institutions. HoNESts goal is to conduct a three-year interdisciplinary analysis of the experience of nuclear developments and its relationship to contemporary society with the aim of improving the understanding of the dynamics over the last 60 years. HoNESts results will assist the current debate on future energy sources and the transition to affordable, secure, and clean energy production. Civil societys interaction with nuclear developments changes over time, and it is locally, nationally and transnationally specific. HoNESt will embrace the complexity of political, technological and economic challenges; safety; risk perception and communication, public engagement, media framing, social movements, etc. Research on these interactions has thus far been mostly fragmented. We will develop a pioneering integrated interdisciplinary approach, which is conceptually informed by Large Technological Systems (LTS) and Integrated Socio-technical System (IST), based on a close and innovative collaboration of historians and social scientists in this field. HoNESt will first collect extensive historical data from over 20 countries. These data will be jointly analyzed by historians and social scientists, through the lens of an innovative integrated approach, in order to improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying decision making and associated citizen engagement with nuclear power. Through an innovative application of backcasting techniques, HoNESt will bring novel content to the debate on nuclear sustainable engagement futures. Looking backwards to the present, HoNESt will strategize and plan how these suitable engagement futures could be achieved. HoNESt will engage key stakeholders from industry, policy makers and civil society in a structured dialogue to insert the results into the public debate on nuclear energy.


Frank A.,Swedish National Defence College
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics) | Year: 2014

A key motive in using gaming for educational purposes is to enhance user motivation and involvement to the subject matter. Within military education, games have always been utilized as a means to think clearly about military operations. However, some research results have shown that gaming, regardless of what the game is supposed to portray, is a meaningful activity in itself, and this can distract the learner away from the educational objective. Playing the game, then, becomes similar to competition, such as in sports where the objective is to only win the game. The player directs actions to achieving game goals even though some actions are inappropriate from a learning perspective. To shed light on the discrepancy between playing a game to win and playing a game to learn, we conducted an experiment on cadets playing an educational wargame. By varying the conditions of the game, playing with or without points, while still in line with the learning objective, we were interested to see what impact it had on the tactics employed by cadets. The results showed that adding reward structures, such as points, changed the outcome of the game, that is, groups playing with points played the game more aggressively and utilized the military units more extensively. These findings suggest that changes in the game design, although educationally relevant, may distract learners to be more oriented towards a lusory attitude, in which achieving the game goals becomes players' biggest concern. © 2014 Springer International Publishing Switzerland.


Borjesson M.,Swedish National Defence College | Enander A.,Swedish National Defence College
Scandinavian Journal of Public Health | Year: 2014

Aims: In response to the 2009 outbreak of A/H1N1 influenza, Swedish authorities decided on a programme for universal vaccination. Over 60% of the population received at least one dose of vaccine. This study examines demographic factors and perceptions related to the decision whether or not to become vaccinated. Methods: A combined web/postal survey was conducted (n = 1587, response rate 53%) in late spring 2010. Questions reported here concerned perceptions, precautionary behaviours and vaccination decision. Results: Main reasons for becoming vaccinated were concerns about spreading the disease to relatives or in the community and confidence in the good effect of vaccination. Vaccination rates were higher among women, those with young children or belonging to a risk group. Main reasons for abstaining were belief that the flu was not a serious threat, low risk of spreading the disease, concern about side-effects and perceived uncertainties in information. Three profiles representing different patterns of thought and beliefs were identified by cluster analysis, respectively labelled as a vulnerable, a trusting and a sceptical group. Vaccination rates and precautionary behaviours were demonstrated to differ between these groups. Conclusions: Perceptions relating to the 2009 pandemic are likely to influence uptake of vaccination in the future. Authorities need to be aware of different patterns of beliefs and attitudes among the public, and that these may vary in different phases. Communication of risk needs to be dynamic and prepared to engage with the public before, during and even for some time after the acute risk period. © 2013 the Nordic Societies of Public Health.


Boin A.,Leiden University | Bynander F.,Swedish National Defence College
Geografiska Annaler, Series A: Physical Geography | Year: 2015

In virtually every assessment of responses to large-scale crises and disasters, coordination is identified as a critical failure factor. After the crisis, official committees and political opponents often characterize the early phases of the response as a 'failure to coordinate.' Not surprisingly, improved coordination quickly emerges as the prescribed solution. Coordination, then, is apparently both the problem and the solution. But the proposed solutions rarely solve the problem: coordination continues to mar most crises and disasters. In the absence of a shared body of knowledge on coordination, it is hard to formulate a normative framework that allows for systematic assessment of coordination in times of crisis. As coordination is widely perceived as an important function of crisis and disaster management, this absence undermines a fair and balanced assessment of crisis management performance. This paper seeks to address that void. We aim to develop a framework that explains both the failure and success of crisis coordination. We do this by exploring the relevant literature, reformulating what coordination is and distilling from research the factors that cause failure and success. © 2014 Swedish Society for Anthropology and Geography.

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