Central to POP-ALERT’s conceptual approach is the requirement to understand how best to alert and support action under crisis conditions by the individual citizen, in familiar and unfamiliar surroundings using mechanisms that will mimic and follow intuitive human behaviour.

The objectives therefore require research not just into best practice for known threats but a more fundamental understanding of human reaction and response to perception and behaviour to perceived threats with an allied understanding of the practical capabilities of stimulating the best options for self-help and creating awareness when attempting to convey critical safety messages.

The main objective of POP-ALERT is to prepare societies and populations to cope with crisis and disasters in a rapid, effective and efficient way by blending traditional Crisis Preparedness and First-Reaction strategies with the use of innovative contemporary tools.

The project will aim to achieve the following:

  • Identify and gain insight into society’s understanding of large scale disaster events, their willingness to accept risk probabilities and engage in preparedness, and their behavioural responses to diverse risks and emergencies measuring expectations in both domestic and foreign situations;
  • Identify specific target success stories within existing and past community preparedness programmes – both at the local (within Member States) and EU level (cross-border) – and put together a portfolio of case studies on social networking and community self-reliance initiatives which could potentially be replicated to crisis with a European dimension and to cross-border disasters;
  • Undertake evidence-based research on the most effective existing delivery routes for informing European citizens in a situation of crisis and to assess the overarching authority strategies of local and national administrations to contribute to the preparedness of citizens;
  • Study the best ways to blend contemporary tools with the existing practices identified in order to create flexible and easily deployable toolkits for preparing and alarming the European population in case of a crisis, taking into account social and cultural differences;
  • Propose a pilot project by designing criteria for selection of the area and population to be involved in the pilot, developing scenarios and objectives;
    Provide a generic methodology to assess the effectiveness in raising an improved level of preparedness of the community.