Exercises and authorities

This strand of the project is led by Keele University with Public Health England, aimed at advancing the understanding of intergroup processes during emergency responses to perceived marauding terrorist attacks. In response to the Covid pandemic, we have reoriented this aspect of the study toward analysing historical incidents where marauding terrorist attacks were perceived to have happened and triggered emergency responses. This will include video analysis of recorded footage, online experiments testing different forms of emergency messaging in such contexts and interviewing frontline responders involved in incidents. This approach will enable us to develop novel analytical techniques and theoretical perspectives to understand the micro social-psychological dynamics in the incidence of a perceived terrorist threat. We will integrate this with the knowledge being developed in the other strands of the project to help build a comprehensive understanding of different levels of intergroup dynamics into which civil contingency responses are embedded in the context of mass emergencies.

As part of this work, Keele University and TFL are collaborating on a project that has opened access to TFLs extensive library of CCTV footage of actual or false-alarm incident evacuations in the London Underground system between 2005 and 2020. This gives Keele Policing Academic Collaboration (KPAC) researchers unprecedented access to data about what happens to people in real-time during such incidents. With investment from the Faculty of Natural Sciences, KPAC has developed a specialist secure video laboratory to undertake the analysis of this newly secured data. The KPAC team will conduct focused analysis of selected incidents, which will involve videography, interview, and post-hoc field observation to understand when and how the public perceive danger and act in a crisis and what roles civil contingency responders play in these processes.

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