Joined session of EPISECC, REDIRENET, SECTOR and SECINCORE projects at PSCE Conference in Brussels

Four current EU-funded projects active in emergency management – EPISECC, REDIRNET, SECTOR and SECINCORE – participated at the recent PSCE Conference, taking place on 18th and 19th May in Brussels, and hosted a joint session entitled “Dynamic Information Sharing”. The session focused on topics related to information sharing, language barriers and standardisation.

EPISECC project coordinator Georg Neubauer (AIT) presented the Inventory that the EPISECC project has developed. EPISECC focuses on developing a concept of a common information space to assist first responders and other actors involved in emergency management. The EPISECC Inventory has been created based on a questionnaire for crisis managers. The Questionnaire enquires about the processes, measures, standards, data resources, tools, cooperation and interoperability that have been used in tackling previous disasters. All the received information is included in the EPISECC Inventory and will form the basis of the common information space.

Jens Pottebaum (SECINCORE) then drew attention to the various language barriers that can be encountered in emergency management. The goal here is to create a common, standardised European taxonomy that would facilitate cooperation between organisations and efficient exploitation of information. At the moment there is great fragmentation and lack of common categorisation of data sets, processes, and information systems. This negatively affects interoperability and hampers the work of disaster managers.
Finally, Aurel Machalek provided insights on the possibilities for standardisation of emergency communications. The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) is responsible for developing and adopting standards in emergency communications. ETSI provides the tools required to address new technologies in any phase of maturity – anything from concept to product standards are under its competence. Implementing some standards in emergency communications would greatly alleviate the problems currently associated with interoperability. To conclude the presentation, Georg Neubauer briefly introduced the CEN Workshop Agreement which should pave the way for the adoption of some standards for emergency communications.
The “Dynamic Information Sharing” session culminated with a roundtable discussion, including representatives from all four projects and chaired by Harold Linke (PSCE).