On trust: Using public information and warning partnerships to support the community response to an emergency

Mike Granatt (Partner in Luther Pendragon and Visiting Professor, University of Westminster)

Journal of Communication Management

ISSN: 1363-254X

Publication date: 1 October 2004


Effective public communication systems are essential for managing crises involving threats to the public. Risk communication is a proven methodology for formulating and delivering appropriate strategies. Modern society, however, is uniquely complex and faces an unknown range of threats. Integrated emergency planning meets multiple contingencies by extending proven everyday systems. For communication, the required capability is to reach mass target audiences swiftly and authoritatively – the everyday function of the news media. Public information and warning partnerships (PIWPs) are voluntary arrangements designed to deliver integrated emergency planning for communication. They harness the collective resources and goodwill of public, private, not‐for‐profit and media organisations without compromising media independence and, therefore, public trust. There are successful national and local examples in the UK, including the national Media Emergency Forum. The BBC’s “Connecting in a Crisis” initiative aims to develop close cooperation between communities and their local stations in emergencies. To develop a fully scalable nationwide response, regional PIWPs – Regional Media Emergency Forums – have been set up.



Granatt, M. (2004), "On trust: Using public information and warning partnerships to support the community response to an emergency", Journal of Communication Management, Vol. 8 No. 4, pp. 354-365. https://doi.org/10.1108/13632540410807745



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