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Preventing, Interdicting and Mitigating the Impact of Mass Violence through Pre-event Risk Communication

April 19 - April 20

The focus of the workshop will be how to prevent, build preparedness, responses and mitigate negative effects of targeted acts of mass violence through communication with the public, local communities and frontline staff in the educational system, transportation etc. More specifically, the workshop will engage with the following questions: What kinds of message content, media outlet, messenger and timing are more likely to be efficient in addressing the risk from targeted acts of (mass) violence in public spaces and to build resilience? How will target audiences respond to pre-event risk communication in terms of risk assessments, feelings of reassurance and behavioral intentions? What types of victim, survivor and bystander problem and protective behaviors need to be addressed through pre-event communication? The workshop will deal with both the threat from ideologically motivated acts of violence as well as less clearly motivated acts of violence. Core issues to be addressed include:

  • Mass violence in schools
  • Involving the public, school teachers and health professionals in reporting suspicious activity
  • Communicating to build resilience in vulnerable communities
  • Framing communications in terms of risks/security vs. care/safeguarding
  • Effectiveness of existing risk communications on deliberate acts of mass violence
  • Informing communications by identifying problem and protective behaviors looking at survivor responses
  • Learning from risk communication regarding other forms of non-deliberate disasters

The purpose of the workshop is to bring together leading scholars and practitioners in the area of resilience building, risk communication and research on mass violence for an inter-disciplinary exchange of research findings, their policy implications and future research projects and ideas. The format of the workshop will be a mix of presentations and plenary discussions in a relatively small setting of invited participants (approx. 15).


April 19
April 20
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Global Security Hub
Orfalea Center for Global & International Studies