Inderscience Publishers

Avoiding crisis in communication: a computer-supported training approach for emergency management

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Crisis management requires stakeholders not only to show strategic, organisational preparedness for crisis events (e.g., by systematising and professionalising coping with work), but also to develop skills in dealing with unanticipated events and other stakeholders involved in the same crisis. They should not only rely on established information flows and behaviour patterns, but also be able to deal with situational aspects. This usually involves communication work within and between organisations involved in crisis management. We describe the practice of the crisis communication training of a German Electricity Provider (GEP) and the prototype we developed, implemented and evaluated. The collaborative training tool targets not only the local practice, but also interorganisational training that will allow improving the mutual understanding of communication practices and meeting the information needs of other stakeholders.

Keywords: crisis training, crisis communications, crisis management systems, computer-supported collaborative learning, CSCL, computer-supported cooperative work, CSCW, emergency management, electricity providers, Germany, collaborative training, interorganisational training

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