Transferring the right disaster information


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Describes the transfer of disaster information from the perspective of indigenous populations (World Conference on Disaster Reduction, Davos Switzerland, 2006): dissemination, meaning, outcomes

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  • Today, I’d like to talk generally about transferring disaster information from those who have it (providers) to those who need it (users). Specifically, I’d like to do this in the context of the GDIN statement about transferring the right information. Particularly, I will use the Native American Project as a case study.
  • Transferring the right disaster information

    1. 1. Transferring the “Right” Disaster Information The Native American Project Albert Simard International Disaster Reduction Conference Davos, Switzerland - Aug. 27-31, 2006
    2. 2. GDIN Information “Rights” Providing the right information, to the right person, in the right format, at the right time and place, to make the right decision. What does that mean and how do we do it?
    3. 3. Information Transfer -Environmental Scan <ul><ul><li>So much new information is being created that it is impossible for professionals to keep up to date. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Passive dissemination of information is generally ineffective. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>There are many barriers to implementing new information. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information transfer is not well understood. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No approach for transferring information works best in all situations. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information transfer must involve collaboration among all stakeholders. </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4. Communication Complexity <ul><li>How accurately can information be disseminated? (transmission problem) </li></ul><ul><li>How well does the information convey a desired meaning? (semantic problem) </li></ul><ul><li>How much does the received meaning affect outcomes? (effectiveness problem) </li></ul>From: Shanon & Weaver (1999)
    5. 5. Information Transfer - Myths and Reality <ul><li>Disseminating information (passive) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Myth: If it is available, they will access it. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reality: Not necessarily </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Message attributes (neutral) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Myth: If providers understand it, so do users. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reality: Not normally </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Achieving outcomes (active) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Myth: If they have it, they will use it. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reality: Not unless they want it. </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. Dissemination Questions <ul><li>Awareness – Do natives know it exists? </li></ul><ul><li>Search - Can they find it? </li></ul><ul><li>Accessibility – Do they have access permission? </li></ul><ul><li>Networks – Are natives connected? </li></ul><ul><li>Formats - Can they read it? </li></ul><ul><li>Systems – Can they analyze it? </li></ul><ul><li>Cost - Can natives afford it? </li></ul><ul><li>Processes – Can they accept it? </li></ul>Dissemi-nation
    7. 7. Who Does What <ul><li>Providers – Organizations who make disaster information available to and accessible by users. </li></ul><ul><li>Transact – Carry out business to enable the transfer of rights to use disaster information. </li></ul><ul><li>Transfer – Deliver, distribute, or disseminate outputs to users. </li></ul><ul><li>Interact – Enhance the ability, readiness, or willingness of external users to understand and apply information to solve their problems. </li></ul><ul><li>Users – Organizations who use disaster information to accomplish objectives, achieve outcomes, or derive benefits. </li></ul>Dissemi-nation From: NRCan (2006)
    8. 8. Sharing <ul><li>Synchronous – (Rich) Two-way communication with virtually no time delay, allowing real-time response . </li></ul><ul><li>Examples </li></ul><ul><li>Conversation </li></ul><ul><li>Presentation </li></ul><ul><li>Telephone </li></ul><ul><li>Door-to-door </li></ul><ul><li>Meetings </li></ul>Dissemi-nation <ul><li>Examples </li></ul><ul><li>E-Mail </li></ul><ul><li>Website </li></ul><ul><li>Notice </li></ul><ul><li>Report </li></ul><ul><li>Newspaper </li></ul>Asynchronous – (Reach) Two-way communication with a time delay, allowing response at user’s convenience.
    9. 9. Communication Channels <ul><li>How will outputs and services be provided? One way or many? Push or pull? Synchronous or asynchronous? </li></ul><ul><li>On-line </li></ul><ul><li>On-site </li></ul><ul><li>Off-site </li></ul><ul><li>Kiosk </li></ul><ul><li>Mail </li></ul><ul><li>E-mail </li></ul><ul><li>Telephony </li></ul><ul><li>Fax </li></ul>Dissemi-nation
    10. 10. Alerts and Warnings <ul><li>Pushing watches or warnings </li></ul><ul><li>Everyone must be contacted </li></ul><ul><li>Message must be absolutely clear </li></ul><ul><li>Recipients must respond immediately </li></ul><ul><li>Channels </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Radio </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Siren </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Telephone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Door-to-door </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Site visit </li></ul></ul>Dissemi-nation
    11. 11. Information Meaning <ul><li>Source (authority, trust, research, program) </li></ul><ul><li>Quality (authoritative, complete, accurate, reliable) </li></ul><ul><li>Utility (relevance, accessible, usable, timely) </li></ul><ul><li>Scale (space, time, complexity, magnitude, hierarchy) </li></ul>Meaning From: NRCan (2006)
    12. 12. Audiences <ul><li>Internal users – leader, manager, planner, advisor, coordinator, worker </li></ul><ul><li>Intermediaries – native groups, governments, business, practitioners, trainers, researchers, media, NGOs, international groups </li></ul><ul><li>Clients – native groups, governments, business, practitioners, educators, researchers, NGOs, international groups </li></ul><ul><li>Personal interests – social, community, well being, safety, employment, education, consumerism, ownership, environment, age, recreation, traveling </li></ul>Meaning From: NRCan (2006)
    13. 13. Audience Characteristics <ul><li>Who are the people you want to reach? </li></ul><ul><li>What motivates them to take action? </li></ul><ul><li>Who do they listen to – opinion leaders? </li></ul><ul><li>Are they permanent or transient? </li></ul><ul><li>Are they partners? Clients? Stakeholders? </li></ul><ul><li>What is their level of professional knowledge? </li></ul>Meaning
    14. 14. Relationships <ul><li>Interacting across networks, communities, disciplines, organizations </li></ul><ul><li>Developing and nurturing relationships among individuals and groups </li></ul><ul><li>Building and maintaining trust and confidence </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding wants and needs of providers and users </li></ul><ul><li>Partnerships, joint activities, sharing, exchanging </li></ul>Meaning Information transfer depends on:
    15. 15. Information Use Context <ul><li>Needs – information is needed to solve a problem </li></ul><ul><li>Wants – information is wanted to solve a problem </li></ul><ul><li>Culture – information is compatible with culture </li></ul><ul><li>Beliefs – information does not contradict beliefs </li></ul><ul><li>Trust – the provider and the information are trusted </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge – user knows how to use the information </li></ul><ul><li>Capacity – user has capacity to use the information </li></ul>Outcomes
    16. 16. Using Information <ul><li>Internally – lead, manage, prepare plans, advise, coordinate, work </li></ul><ul><li>Professionally – govern, commercialize, manage, study, report, interact, educate, advocate, intervene </li></ul><ul><li>Personally – Interact, thrive, be safe, work, learn, purchase, own, monitor, participate, recreate, travel </li></ul>Outcomes From: NRCan (2006)
    17. 17. Information Outcomes <ul><li>Disaster outcomes – stewardship, competitiveness, preservation, conservation, development, policies, strategies, management, consensus, position, awareness, risk, supply, infrastructure, productivity </li></ul><ul><li>Societal benefits – state of society, the economy, the environment, and infrastructure; social, economic, environmental, and institutional sustainability </li></ul><ul><li>Personal benefits – individual, community, societal, balance sheet, net worth, environmental conditions, environmental trends </li></ul>Outcomes From: NRCan (2006)
    18. 18. Conclusion <ul><li>The right information in the right format, to the right people, at the right time and place, to make the right decision means that we must provide: </li></ul><ul><li>Information that natives can easily access, is compatible with existing capacity, and is affordable. </li></ul><ul><li>Information from trusted, authoritative sources that is understandable, complete, and reliable. </li></ul><ul><li>Information that meets native needs, fits their ways of working, and is useful for solving their problems. </li></ul>