D2.2 Formal solutions to improve societal resilience

Executive summary


Civil society plays a crucial role in dealing with disasters and it has to be part of the preparation, response, and recovery processes of the crisis. To fully utilize the potential of the civilians in dealing with crises, it is essential to improve the collaboration and interaction of authorities and emergency organizations with the civil society to efficiently respond and recover from crises. For that to happen, authorities and emergency organizations set and use a group of practices, guidelines, techniques, tools, methods, etc. that help them reach the society and involve it in crisis management. In this project, we use the term “solutions” to refer to this set of means that emergency responders and authorities can use and implement to reach out to the public and improve the interaction with them. These solutions can be either formal or informal based on whether they have been defined and developed beforehand to be used in a given situation or on the contrary, they have been created on the fly because a solution is inexistent or not suitable to handle the given situation (for further details about these concepts look at Table 1 in section 1.5). Furthermore, defining how this interaction with the civilians is carried out and what specific purposes are achieved through this collaboration is needed to move further in this aim.


This deliverable aims at identifying formal solutions that emergency organizations and authorities already use and implement to improve their interaction with the civil society. These formal solutions are described in detail and classified based on the solution type, on the crisis phase in which they are implemented, and on the interaction purposes they contribute to. In this first step, we collected the different solutions that are already used by the end-users with the aim of afterward (in WP3) make a selection of the most promising solutions based on the effectiveness of the solutions depending on the contextual factors of each region.


We applied a variety of methods to identify solutions. These methods are basically classified into two big groups, the ones related to the analysis of scientific and grey literature and the ones based on collecting the information from the end-users. A systematic literature review, a revision of European projects and international reports, and the analysis of case studies were carried out to identify solutions defined in the scientific and grey literature. On the other side, a co-creation process with the end-users was done applying different methodologies to gather information from them. A survey with the partner end-users, an end-user workshop, a KI-CoP workshop, and semistructured interviews with end-users were performed to identify solutions. As a result of the systematic literature review, 130 papers were analysed. From the revision of the European projects, initially, 66 projects were selected and priority was given to the recent ones (the last 5 years). In the case of international reports, web searches and references were used and priority was given to reports close in time. For the analysis of case studies, as it is explained in D1.1, L’Aquila earthquake in Italy, flash floods in Israel’s Negev desert, the Japan Tsunami, the Swedish wildfires, the coronavirus pandemic, the Utoya terrorist attack in Norway, the Thalys train attack in Belgium and Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident were studied. In order to collect the solutions from the endusers, a survey with partner end-users of the project was carried out in which they were asked to fill a form with each of the solutions they use in their professional tasks. Based on a specific scenario related to COVID-19, in the end-user workshop and the KI-CoP workshop, the end-users were asked to provide solutions they would have used to handle these situations. And finally, in the semistructured interviews with external end-users, different solutions already used by the participants were collected.


In total, 168 formal solutions were obtained from this variety of sources of information. 42 solutions were identified in the scientific and grey literature and 126 were collected from the endusers. In the case of scientific and grey literature review, 14 formal solutions were identified through the systematic literature review, 17 from the revision of European projects, and international reports, and 11 from the analysis of case studies. In the case of formal solutions collected from the endusers, 35 come from the partner end-user survey, 20 from the end-user workshop, 22 from the KICoP workshop, and 49 from the semi-structured interviews. These formal solutions were classified into different types of solutions: 28 belong to the awareness and training campaigns group, 26 are apps, 20 guidelines are proposed, 16 belong to the collaborative methods and technologies group, 16 are plans to deal with different kind of disasters, 14 solutions represent different traditional media and social media channels, 12 solutions are classified into services to reach society, 11 are web platforms, 7 solutions belong to call centers type, 6 solutions cover the idea of community of practices, 5 solutions were identified within the alert system group and another 5 within the framework type, and finally 2 solutions were oriented towards providing incentives for improving the disaster management.

Regarding the interaction purposes addressed by the solutions, most of the solutions aimed at improving knowledge and information sharing with the civil society (104 out of 168) followed by improving communication with the civilians (92 out of 168). 84 out of 168 solutions cover enhancing the society’s risk awareness level; increasing preparedness and empowering the civilians in governance and leadership practices are the next purposes covered by the solutions. Starting from the bottom, only 44 out of 168 aim at facilitating resource allocation, 51 out of 168 target improving health and mental outlook, and 61 out of 168 can be used to capitalize on social networks and relationships.


This deliverable identifies the formal solutions that are used or can be used by authorities and emergency organizations to enhance their interaction with the civil society. We gathered solutions from different sources and they have been classified based on the solution type, the crisis phase in which they could be implemented, and the interaction purposes they address. The distribution of solutions across purposes gives us a good idea of which solutions serve which kind of benefit and which purposes are lacking solutions. This could help policymakers, authorities, and emergency responders to identify the solutions they can apply in each case based on their goals. This study presents the first step in this process and in the future a more detailed analysis about in which cases these solutions are effective and in which cases they are not should be carried out to select the most promising solutions for each situation. This will be done in WP3 and a more detailed analysis about the effectiveness of the solutions will be provided in D2.5.