Risk and crisis communication training needs for public officers in National Civil Protection System - I bisogni di formazione per la comunicazione del rischio e dell'emergenza nel Sistema Nazionale di Protezione Civile
|Francesco D'Amato||Componenti strutturati del gruppo di ricerca|
Despite high exposition and vulnerability to socio-natural, technological and health risks, disciplines such risk and crisis communication still remain very troubling issues in Italy. In recent years a number of incidents involving risk and crisis communication failures occurred, often involving serious legal consequences for risk managers, officers and employees (e.g. Seveso toxic chemical release, 1976; Sarno flood and landslide, 1998; L'Aquila Earthquake, 2009; Rigopiano avalanche, 2017). Although these events were triggered by physical events or chemical agents, it is recognized that communication can play a pivotal role in amplifying risk consequences (see Kaspersons et al., 1988). The leading hypothesis of the following project is that unintended consequences of poor risk / crisis communication are due to the lack of a legal, professional and academic framework able to define recognizable roles, professional standards, required skills and training needs of risk communication managers and officers within the Italian National Civil Protection System. Within the mentioned system, skills, duties and professional training of risk / emergency communicators are vaguely defined by the law on Public Communication (L. 150/2000) and Civil Protection Code (DLGS 1/2018), thus tampering comprehensive effectiveness of risk / crisis communication in the whole Italian National Civil Protection System.
The here presented project is focused on risk communication training needs of risk / crisis communication managers and officers, in different branches of the system in order to study their cultural and professional background, assess their educational needs and provide adequate training programs to ensure / improve their ability to understand risk scenarios and to plan and perform effective and sound risk communication strategies, to properly use tools and methodologies and handle relations with citizens, governmental authorities and the media.