Strengthening resilience through social cohesion
(10.09.2020) Social cohesion increases the resilience of local communities in times of crises and disasters. As part of the research project ResOrt recommendations were developed on how civil protection organizations, welfare associations, neighborhood organizations and local authorities can strengthen social cohesion and community resilience. A collection of best practices and tools has now been put together in a guide book for these organizations. You can download it here (in German).
(26.08.2020) Volume VIII of the series deals with the question how the resilience of local communities and neighbourhoods can be strengthened. The first part introduces key concepts such as the socio-spatial approach in disaster management, community resilience and the role of the local municipal level in German disaster management. Furthermore it takes a look at the presence of local Red Cross chapters in communites and develops ideas for a socio-spatial approach to disaster management.
New research project RESIK starting March 2020
(21.04.2020) Everyday life and disaster management structures must be more closely interlinked, as the KOPHIS and INVOLVE research projects clearly show. The ResOrt project highlights the crucial importance of socio-spatial networking among local disaster management organisations. The new RESIK project focuses on bringing together disaster management and hospital structures. In crises and disasters, hospitals are always of special importance as critical infrastructure, whose function must be maintained even under extreme conditions. The RESIK collaborative project, which is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, develops concepts for effective cooperation between all relevant stakeholders, focusing on the supporting role of aid organisations in the crisis phases " strengthening of hospital structures" and "evacuation and decentralised care of patients".
DRK survey on the refugee aid mission 2015/16
(31.03.2020) In April 2020, the German Red Cross research and civil protection unit will launch an internal DRK online survey on the refugee aid mission 2015/16 in Germany. The survey aims at the experiences made by GRC-volunteers and full-time GRC-employees who worked with new forms of engagement of the German civil society. The results of the survey will serve as the basis for the progression of practice-oriented recommendations. This method of research can be used for successful cooperation in future situations and for the further development of disaster services.
In addition, there will be a list of questions on the achieved experiences in cooperation with different partners of the health sector. These results will be incorporated into the SiKoMi research project.
The survey is part of the WAKE research project (more information on WAKE and the SiKoMi project can be found on this homepage under the tab “Ongoing Projects”). The duration of the survey is estimated to be over a period of six weeks. Upcoming results are expected to be made available in the winter of 2020/21 as part of the Publication series.
The new research project AUPIK
(03.03.2020) The research projects KOPHIS and INVOLVE demonstrated clearly that everyday life and disaster management systems must be more closely interlinked in order to provide needs-based support to those in need of care at home in a crisis event. The AUPIK project, funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research as part of its security research programme, is developing solutions that will enable coordination between the two systems. AUPIK started with a kick-off meeting in Tübingen and is being carried out under the leadership of the International Centre for Ethics in the Sciences and Humanities at the University of Tübingen together with the German Red Cross, the Institute for Health and Nursing Science at Charité Berlin and the Vincentz Network.
Workshop „Learning from refugee aid: Opportunities through voluntary work“
23.11.2019: As part of the WAKE research project, the research department of the GRC Headquarter organised a workshop called "Learning from refugee aid: Opportunities through voluntary work", moderated by research associate Elisabeth Olfermann. Together with experts from different German Red Cross regional and district branches and researchers, the participants discussed various questions around cooperation with civil society actors and knowledge management using the example of the refugee situation 2015/16 in Germany. The insights gained will now be incorporated into the preparations for a quantitative survey to be conducted in the first half of 2020.
Workshop "European Security Research" in Brussels
20./21.11.2019: This year, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research once again invited interested parties to Brussels to discuss the current state of European security research. For this year's event entitled "Civil Security in Horizon Europe: Quo vadis?", Matthias Max represented the German Red Cross at the panel "Rivalry or Symbiosis? Practitioners and SMEs in European Security Research". There he introduced the EU project BuildERS to the audience and discussed the transferability of research results into practice with the other panelists from authorities and organisations with security related tasks.
Documentation of field operations
(23.10.2019) In January 2019, five counties in Upper Bavaria officially declared the emergency status due to heavy snowfalls. The German Red Cross documented the snow operation in Bavaria from the perspective of the Bavarian Red Cross, based on interviews with full-time staff and volunteers. The documentation focuses on the affected population, major challenges in providing assistance for the most vulnerable people as well as maintaining the reliability of health infrastructures.
(19.08.2019) The second part of Volume 5 is dealing with the role of Digital Volunteers - people who help in a crisis via the internet. This potential of digital assistance also offers many new opportunities for volunteering in disaster management. As an example, a digital volunteer can be deployed as a social media expert, assist in monitoring social Media, or even conduct digital social space mapping and other tasks that can be done online. International concepts and research results from the K3 project, workshops and an deployment exercise offer precise information of possible implementation within the GRC.
GRC and BRC - strong partners in security research
(13.05.2019) The Bavarian Red Cross cooperates in various thematic fields and is an innovative as well as competent partner in security research. Through national and international contacts, the BRC has an excellent network. The BRC and the GRC worked closely together on the COBRACORE and K3 projects and on the scientific assessment of the snow disaster in 2019.
Kick-off meeting BuildERS
(08.-10.05.2019) On the 1st of May 2019, the European research project BuildERS started, in which the GRC is involved as a research partner. Among numerous outlines submitted to the EU under the Horizont2020 funding programme, BuildERS is one of very few projects to be funded. The aim of the project is to identify the most vulnerable population groups in crises in a pan-European comparison and to increase their resilience. Within the framework of the three-year project, the GRC will conduct a case study in Germany.
12th Congress of Mayors
07./08.05.2019 in Magdeburg: Crises and disasters were the topic of the two-day annual congress of mayors on the 7th and 8th of may 2019 in Magdeburg, which was organised by the Behörden Spiegel. The GRC-research was represented with a talk and information booth with GRC publication series, anthologies and information brochures. The participants showed great interest in the research results and concepts. During the talk, possibilities and proven methods of a more social space-oriented civil protection were presented and how this can provide better support for vulnerable population groups, such as people in need of care, during major emergencies.
22./24.03.2019 in Paderborn: As part of the Safety Days at the University of Paderborn, the GRC-research organized a challenge at the hackathon. The aim was to prepare and visualize publicly available data on vulnerabilities and resources (e.g. demographic data) in order to support the deployment before and during a crisis. This was intended to further develop the idea of digital mapping of social space, which had emerged from the work of the GRC-research. With its solution of a web application for the interactive analysis of georeferenced data on a map, the group won the first prize of the GRC challenge.
10 Years of Research at the GRC
(21.03.2019) March of 2009 marks the beginning of the GRC’s first research project conducted together with partners from the civil security research. Since then, the GRC has been cooperating with 118 different project partners from academia, industry, health and welfare as well as administration and public authorities and organizations with security and safety Tasks (BOS). Starting in 2014, the findings are being published in the research publication series. As of December 2018 around 75.000 copies have been ordered nationally and internationally.
Visit at the BRC
(28.02.2019) The Bavarian Red Cross (BRC) invited staff members of the Unit Research in Civil Protection to visit Munich, Miesbach and Garmisch-Partenkirchen to conduct interviews regarding the snow disaster in Bavaria in January 2019. Supported by the coordinator of security research Uwe Kippnich we talked to various volunteers and employees of the BRC in order to gain insight into coping with this extreme event with special consideration of vulnerable people. The findings will be published in our research publication series.
Closing Event KOPHIS
23./24.01.2019 in Tübingen: The research project KOPHIS successfully ended with the closing event “Disaster Management and Care”. The high number of participants from the fields of disaster management, care and welfare showed great interest within and beyond the Red Cross: Around 80 people took part in the conference and enriched the discussion with their feedback and questions. Various panels on the topics of resilience, self-sufficiency and people in need of care in disaster management were important components of the event.
Scientific Programme Committtee
(21.01.2019) Matthias Max, Head of Research, is an appointed member of the current Scientific Advisory Board on the "Research for Civil Security" programme. As an independent committee of experts, it advises the Federal Ministry of Education and Research on questions of civil security research. The Scientific Programme Committee consists of experts from all relevant scientific disciplines, industry, private infrastructure operators, public authorities and organisations with security and safety tasks.
Socio-spatial approach to civil protection
(18.01.2019) The English version of the publication series 6 was released at the end of the research project KOPHIS, which dealt with the strengthening of resilience of vulnerable groups in civil protection. This volume contains findings to which extent vulnerable groups of elderly people who are cared for at home and people in need of care are affected by crises, large-scale emergencies, and disasters. By combining networking and local participation, the KOPHIS research project has demonstrated a way to a more social space-oriented civil protection.
Publication series Volume 4 English version
(20.12.2018) At the end of the INVOLVE project, an English version of the research publication series is released: “Strengthening of Community Resilience – The German Red Cross Disaster Services. Recommendations for Action Based on Research Results”. It summarizes the main project results for an international audience. It points out central conditions for sustainable GRC disaster services in the face of societal developments in Germany and documents the viewpoint of GRC fieldworkers. Finally, recommendations for the GRC disaster services to meet future needs are presented that were developed in cooperation with GRC experts from different regional branches.
Symposium of disaster services expert advisers
17./18.11.2018 in Braunschweig: The final results of the INVOLVE project were presented on this year‘s symposium of the disaster services expert advisers. Tanja Knopp, deputy federal leader of the stand-by services, was very pleased about the gain in knowledge of the project. The resulting practical recommendations for the disaster services will now be further implemented in the association. The participants also used the results of INVOLVE at the conference to develop a national strategy for disaster services.
Publication series Volume 6 Part 1
(15.10.2018) Volume 6 of the series deals with elderly people and those in need of care in crises, major emergencies and disasters. This first part serves as an introduction of the content. Scientific findings and practical challenges are presented. In addition to the research-based approaches, the research project KOPHIS is introduced.
Publication series Volume 4 Part 3
(02.10.2018) Volume 4 documents the results of a scientific study on the strengthening of social resilience by the disaster control specialist service "Betreuungsdienst"/"disaster services". Part 3 summarizes the results of the Consultants' Conference "disaster services". Martin Bullermann, head of federal emergency services, (see picture above) discussed experiences, needs and suggestions for improvement with his consultants.
Publication series Volume 5 Part 1
(02.10.2018) Volume 5 is devoted to the topic "Web 2.0 and Social Media in Civil Protection". Social media platforms are becoming increasingly popular and are gaining in importance even in crisis and disaster situations. These processes of change also influence the work of the GRC associations. In the first part, the further development of the Internet in the form of Web 2.0 and social media are presented.
BMBF Innovation forum „Civil Security“
19/20 June 2018 in Berlin: The conference on the framework programme "Research for Civil Security" aims at the exchange of actors from the specialist scene and was well attended by over 600 participants. Ms. Szepan, Head of the Nursing Department of the AOK Federal Association (see photo above, right) showed great interest in the research work of the GRC and the publication series.