JCDR wins big at EMPA awards

Big congratulations are in order for Julia Becker and Emma Hudson Doyle and their wider team of Sally Potter, Sara McBride, Anna Wien and Douglas Paton, who were recognised at the Annual EMPA (Emergency Media and Public Affairs association) Awards for Excellence in Emergency Communication last week, taking out the 2019 Research Award.

Their paper, titled “When the earth doesn’t stop shaking: How experiences over time influenced information needs, communication, and interpretation of aftershock information during the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence, New Zealand” looked to better understand aftershock information needs for agencies and the public, and how people interpreted and responded to such information, setting out to address little-researched issues related to “people having limited or no understanding of the complex nature of seismic processes, including the reality that aftershock sequences represent significant sources of risk that can persist for long periods of time.”

There were three themes among the key findings: the need to provide education and training about aftershocks before an earthquake sequence, providing a diversity of information for different audiences, and the importance of using empathy in aftershock communications. Their findings have been applied by GNS Science, GeoNet, and USGS practice for communicating aftershock forecasts.

The Annual EMPA Awards for Excellence in Emergency Communication were established to recognise those who have made a significant contribution to emergency communications in Australia and New Zealand.

Read the paper here

(Photo cred: Sally Potter)