In this final summary of the recent annual forum of the National Emergency Management Association held in Memphis, Tennessee in October, I found most compelling the panel discussion entitled “Combating Contested Information During Disaster Response and Recovery” addressed the emerging threat of what is called “MDM”: meaning Misinformation, Dis-information, and Mal-information.
A follow- up to my recent post (“A Thought about Taking the AI Plunge”) on the risk/reward associated embracing artificial intelligence comes from the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA) October 2023 forum panel discussion on this subject.
The rising angst over the apparent advance in artificial intelligence, or AI, called to mind the limerick (“Daisy…” etc.) that HAL, the state-of-the-art computer in the film “2001, A Space Odyssey” was reduced to repeating when HAL’S human soul mate (Dave) attempted to unplug him/it (?). HAL survived, but it did not go well for “Dave”.
Shortly after the audacious 2008 Mumbai, India terrorist attack which took 160 lives, a Seattle Police Department Assistant Chief mused that a similarly trained team could paralyze a city like Seattle for a “considerable” time. Mumbai illustrated how a team of well-trained bad actors could exact considerable damage.
The National Emergency Management Association (NEMA) biannual gatherings are opportunities for information-sharing and straightforward discussions with government and private sector leaders. State (and territorial) emergency management directors occupy unique roles. Responsible to the governor or a senior official – in Washington State it’s The Adjutant General (TAG) – they not only deal with issues affecting their respective jurisdictions (while balancing the political inclinations of elected officials), but aided by Association staff must be alert to developments on the national front that could impact local and state government.
Educators and senior emergency management officials have pondered what would motivate a person to aspire to a career in emergency management. How do we attract bright young students while providing continuing education and growth opportunities for those already immersed in emergency management roles? This is not just a problem of the moment how can emergency management survive, and thrive, in the long term?
Back-to-School Programs Looking for a great career opportunity? Thinking about career options or looking to change careers? The climate change crisis has created significate educational opportunities in Emergency and Risk Management for industries, government, and public service. Join the workforce to help maintain national security, response to all-hazard events and help build strong resiliency in a changing world. Our current CTC programs focus on 6 major pathways: Criminal Justice Cyber/Technolgy Medical and Health Services Fire/Wildland Homeland Security Emergency Management Occupational Health and Safety These pathway programs begin in the K-12 systems with 15 of our statewide skill centers. Students [...]
Who Needs to be Educated About Emergency Management? Who doesn’t? By Jim Mullen Emergency managers often lack the political clout, or even the bureaucratic standing, to have much of an impact on policy decisions societies make. We’re there to try to mitigate, within our means, prepare the community and ourselves to the extent limited funds allow, coordinate a multi-disciplinary response, and manage (steer?) the process of recovery. And then we assess our performance and start over. Far too often, we fail to educate the public that mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery are their responsibilities too. For years, emergency managers landed [...]
Volunteers: Partners in Emergency Management Preparedness By Linda Crerar April is National Volunteer Month and we are recognizing the work and service of the many dedicated volunteers like those who have been so instrumental in establishing, supporting, and implementing the Partners in Emergency Preparedness Conference every year. Volunteers have built this organization for 31 years and it is important to understand the history of the organization and the contributions volunteers have made to sustain it. Partners is a non-profit charitable organization founded in 1991 and is the largest and most successful regional emergency management preparedness conference in the Pacific Northwest. [...]