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Crisis theater after a terrorist attack : lighting by qualitative methods

Authors: Fanny Di Tursi*, Université de Cergy-Pontoise
Topics: Hazards, Risks, and Disasters, Qualitative Methods, Cartography
Keywords: Terrorism, crisis management, map tools, mental maps, qualitative methods
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


When a terrorist attack occurs, as a mass murder, for example, and in an urban environment, it can cause huge human damages. So, to respond to this crisis, a lot of emergency responders intervene. They have some missions very different which are conducted in the same time. Policemen have to neutralize the terrorist group, while medical crew, as physicians and rescuers, have to take over wounded civilians.

To carry out their missions, we know that all these emergency responders use mapping tools, and widely some geospatial tools. However, we don’t know accurately how they are organized, in teams, with leaders, where they are positioned in the crisis theater, and so on. My questions are about how the terrorist crisis management is really organized, while hundreds of workers are in the same little place, how stakeholders really use map tools, and what is their real role in the crisis management.

In my presentation, I will very focus on the qualitative methods that I have the intention to use. First, I will do individuals and collectives interviews to understand their geospatial tools practices, how is managed the situation, according to them. Then, I will observe exercises based on a terrorist attack scenario played by emergency responders to compare if the theory matches with the reality, how it is managed in the real life. I will complete this with terrorist attacks exercises feedbacks. Finally, I will use mental maps with emergency responders to understand their own representation of the crisis theatre.

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