Risk Communication in a Constrained Information Environment

Last week at the Heritage Foundation, I sat on a panel with CBS News correspondent Kim Dozier, former Director of External Affairs for FEMA Jonathon Thompson. The panel was moderated by my friend Dennis Murphy, professor at the US Army War College. The two-day event, Homeland Security’s Wicked Problems:  Developing a Research Agenda for Homeland Security, was webcast live. Our panel was on day 2 of “Wicked Problems” and is now available here or below. 

I am third to present, after Jonathon and Kim, and come in around the 43rd minute.

The proceedings for Day 1 are not yet online.

One Reply to “Risk Communication in a Constrained Information Environment”

  1. Upfront, I didn’t listen to the entire 3 hour panel but base these thoughts on Matt’s 15 minutes and then immediate conversations afterward.First, I agree passionately with all of your various points as each one is grounded in the constantly changing way people are communicating now.
    One topic I think deserves more time and attention because, in my opinion, it is the basis for all other topics you touch on is the changing and blurried line of who are the ‘prosumers’ and who are the ‘consumers’.
    The answer is there isn’t a clear answer anymore and there probably never will be again; simply anyone with a credible channel to disseminate information is both, the creator and consumer of news. And credible in this instance is a relative term. So, the underlying issue on most new communication discussions is the ‘blurried line.’
    The ‘blurried line’ and losing resources for conventional media are clearly, maybe unilaterally, related – as you mentioned, conventional media is being supplemented by channels such as iReport/uReport/Twitter, etc. – all free, easy information channels.
    Blurried lines now enable fact vs. opinion to be a topic of discussion on all stories, and an important one, but the importance of first draft of history and the 140 characters sometimes limit the ability to include context for those stories.
    Blurried lines SHOULD allow us, as you say, to take a much larger part in the words and ideas that the individual terrorism deeds support. Great point here!
    In conclusion, I couldn’t agree more with each of your points but think that the power of the individual now and how that relates to NOW media is so significant that until we can convince decision makers to understand that, we’ll lag in establishing a comprehensive communication ability. Sorry for length.

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