Risky Monday: Challenges of international Humanitarian Aid

We thank Mr. Altheim very much for this interesting insights.

For further information please contact Neysa Setiadi (neysa.setiadi(at)th-koeln.de)”


Risky Monday – Terror risks at events

On May 29th the Institute of Rescue Engineering and Civil Protection presented in context of the lecture series “Risky Monday” a panel discussion regarding the “Terror risks at events”. Mr. Buschhoff und Mr. Scherer discussed various aspects of the difficulties of technical systems for maintaining safety in dynamic systems. Background of the discussion was also the terror attack in Manchester on  May 23th 17 which took place in a concert of the famous singer Ariana Grande.

Mr. Buschhoff und Mr. Scherer are teaching staff members in the  group of Event Safety.


Video on lessons of disaster recovery and resilience in the context of the Indian Ocean Tsunami 2004


This video sums up discussions of the DAAD Alumni seminar „11 years after the Indian Ocean Tsunami 2004 – Lessons of Disaster Recovery, Rehabilitation & Resilence“ conducted by TH Köln University of Applied Sciences, United Nations University (UNU) – Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) and the Social Policy Analysis and Research Centre (SPARC) of the Faculty of Arts, University of Colombo on the topics of disaster recovery, rehabilitation, resilience and their effective and sustainable implementation in practice.

Please note that the video is very short and lacks quite a number of specifics such as deaths also in Africa and more background on vulnerability and resilience. However, the main message we want to convey is the discussion of the effectiveness and sustainability of short and long term aid and recovery measures implemented in context of the Indian Ocean Tsunami 2004.

Special thanks to all participants of the DAAD Alumni Seminar who shared their experience and expertise as well as to the video’s motiondesigner Johannes Stahl (http://stahldsgn.de/).

New Sessions of “Risky Monday”

We welcome you to new sessions of the Risky Monday, the  lecture series on interdisciplinary risk and crisis management where we invite experts from different scientific and practical fields to share their experience and discuss respective challenges and opportunities.

The Risky Monday takes place on a regulary basis from 5.30 – 7.00 pm at the TH Köln University of Applied Sciences, campus Deutz, usually in room ZS8-8 (south wing, floor 8, room 8).



Flood protection in the Netherlands – study visit to Room for the River project in Nijmegen and to Delta Works

During last week, one of our team members visited various flood protection and water management projects in the Netherlands together with collaborating international researchers.


(c) C. Stephan

An impressing example of an interdisciplinary approach towards flood risk management is the Room for the River project in the city of Nijmegen, which is part of the National Room for the River program setup after severe river flooding  in 1993 and 1995.In a presentation and excursion along the river Waal, the main distributary branch of the Rhine, landscape architect Mathieu Schouten presented the main ideas of an integrated bottom-up approach for the planning of interventions, which included aspects of flood protection, increase in biodiversity and urban planning. Inclusive stakeholder management and the involvement of local people in the landscape design have made this project a showcase for governance of the water-scape of the river Waal. Please find more information on the Room for the River project in Nijmegen on the project website.

Besides this integrative approach of flood management and landscape design, the researcher visited parts of the Delta Works.


(c) C. Stephan

These are a series of infrastructural projects that protect a large area of land around the Rhine-Meuse-Scheldt delta from floods from the sea. The Netherlands has a total of 17,500 kilometres in dykes. Without dykes, dunes and storm surge barriers, today 40% of the country would be permanently under water. The large infrastructural interventions, carried out in the SW of Netherlands between 1957 and 1986, strongly affected the ecological characteristics of the estuarine transit zones. While in the last years ecological rehabilitation has gained importance in the delta areas, at the same time transport by cargo ships and protection against flooding as well as long-term planning for sea level rise need to be considered.


Fake News as a new (?) challenge in crisis and risk communication

In our latest DGSMtech workshop (see post below) we have debated the current role of fake news for civil protection agencies and Virtual Operation Support Teams (VOST). Fake news are not a new phenomenon; propaganda, false information, prefabricated alternative facts but also the demand for alternative sources and critical reflection on opinions have all existed before the advent of the internet. One often repeated arguments for the internet, youtube and social media age being different to TV, photo and print media is speed and accessibility. It is supposed that not only the opportunities for feedback and easier spread of information have increased. Also, the habits of media consumption and expectations for rapid (tweet-speed) information delivery have changed. But also the trust in authorities, journalism and sources of information have transformed, as for example, some digital natives might turn to some youtubers’ opinion first rather than to some of the old media anchor persons.

On this backdraft of transformations in society in dealing with new media and information technologies, the question debated on our workshop was; how does this affect professionals working with social
media in press and public relation offices in civil protection agencies for instance, but also, how does it affect volunteers working sometimes „from the sofa“ in similar topics or even in organised structures such as a VOST?

Read more

Workshop on Crowd Mapping and Social Media for civil protection – “Rumors and FAKE news” (in German)

17.-18.3.2017 an der TH Köln, IWZ in Deutz, Betzdorfer Str. 2, Raum ZS-8-8


Wir veranstalten zusammen mit der Deutschen Gesellschaft zur  Förderung von Social Media und Technologien im Bevölkerungsschutz e.V. (DGSMtech) einen Workshop zum Thema “Gerüchte und Fake News – VOST* aktuell: DGSMTech Workshop und Mitgliederversammlung”

*Virtual Operation Support Team

Aber trotzdem kein Fake News:
Freitag Mittag beginnt der erste Teil des Workshops an der TH Köln.
Interessante Vorträge!
Nach Paris, Berlin und München der aktuellste “Social Media: Informationssteuerung in operativen Lagen.”

Am Freitagabend findet die jährliche Mitgliederversammlung statt. Diese ist öffentlich, jedoch haben nur Mitglieder des Vereins Stimmrecht.

ZEITPLAN finden Sie hier

Ein paar Themen, mit denen wir uns beim Workshop befassen wollen:

  • Der Weg in die Praxis mit dem deutschen VOST
  • Umgang mit Gerüchten und “Fake News” in sozialen Netzwerken
  • Social Media in der Bevölkerungsschutz-Praxis … und einiges mehr!

Für das leibliche Wohl ist gesorgt. Der Eintritt ist frei.

Weitere Infos auf der DGSMTech Hompage