“What you always do before you make a decision is consult. The best public policy is made when you are listening to people who are going to be impacted. Then, once a policy is determined, you call on them to help you sell it.”
— Margaret Dole
Banner image (photo of Holyrood Parliament Banner image (photo of a delegate in a suit listening intently at a conference)

“Today, Britain faces a different and more complex range of threats from a myriad of sources. Terrorism, unconventional attacks, as well as large scale accidents or natural hazards – anyone could do grave damage to our country… The task of protecting our security is never complete and in an age of uncertainty we must remain vigilant, regularly taking stock of the changing threats we face.”
— The National Security Strategy, October 2010


VIDEO: Indyref highlights in three minutes
Highlights of the Scottish referendum campaign, squeezing two years of headlines into a three minute film. More
NHS independent inquiry call by BMA
The British Medical Association has called for a full-scale independent investigation into all services in the NHS in Wales. More
VIDEO: Youth employment 'still a problem'
Shadow Work and Pensions Minister Stephen Timms has welcomed the latest fall in unemployment but says there are still problems with youth and long-term unemployment. More

Event Details

Title: Predict and Prevent: Emergency Preparedness and Civil Contingencies in a New Age of Uncertainty
Date: Tuesday 13th March 2012
Time: 10.00am – 4:30pm
Venue: Central London
Register your place

Key Speakers

Jennifer Cole, Head of Emergency Management, Royal United Services Institute (RUSI)
Dr Brooke Rogers, Co-Director, Security and Society, King’s College London; Member, Community Resilience Programme Steering Group, Cabinet Office (CCS)
Andrew Huddart, Programme Manager, National Local Authority Olympic Resilience Team, London Fire Brigade


Geographically Britain is an island, but economically and politically it is a vital link in the global network, and this openness brings vulnerabilities. Since 2001, the Government has sought to adapt to new risks whilst addressing weaknesses in the disaster response and recovery effort at both the local and national level through new legislation and designing more resilient civil protection structures.

The National Security Strategy (October 2010) outlined three of the highest priority risks that we face as a nation in this "new age of uncertainty": international terrorism (including the threat from Northern Ireland), major accidents or natural hazards (including flooding) and pandemics.

Whilst international terrorism has remained high on the political radar, it was the 2007 floods which provoked the largest ever civil emergency response since the Second World War – the devastating effects of the floods highlighted the impact that natural disasters can have on local communities. More recently, the prolonged cold weather in the winter of 2010 had a crippling effect on the transport system, schools and businesses, costing the UK economy over £600 million a day.

We must be prepared to deal with the possibility of major natural hazards and be resilient in handling and recovering from their effects as outlined in Keeping the Country Running: Natural Hazards and Infrastructure (October 2011). Pandemic influenza is also one of the most severe natural challenges likely to affect the UK and therefore remains the highest risk on the National Risk Register of Civil Emergencies. The UK Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy (November 2011) reflects on the lessons learned following the H1N1 influenza pandemic including the recommendations of the National Independent Review.

The strategic response to these threats must ensure a secure and resilient UK and as such, when risks turn into actual damage to our interests, resilience needs to be promoted both locally and nationally. The Strategic National Framework on Community Resilience (March 2011) focuses on the need for communities to take a strong and active role to improve their resilience to disasters and emergency situations.

This timely Symposium provides an invaluable platform for local authorities, emergency planning stakeholders and infrastructure providers to distil the various strands of national security and civil contingency policy. The symposium offers an essential opportunity to share best practice and discuss how the latest measures can be implemented effectively to improve not only local resilience but also to develop a more robust general civil contingency framework that will enable local authorities and communities to respond swiftly to major emergencies with strong leadership, communication and collaboration.

Delegates will:

  • Assess the current threats and analyse government priorities for improving UK resilience
  • Discuss the key strategies in delivering excellence in emergency situations
  • Assess the Civil Contingencies Enhancement Programme and Strategic Defence and Security Review
  • Share best practice and gain valuable insights into emergency preparedness at the local level


09:30 Registration and Morning Refreshments
10:15 Chair's Welcome and Introduction
10:30 Panel Session One:
New Threats, New Strategies - The National Response
  • Beyond the National Security Strategy – The Government’s Approach to Domestic Resilience
  • Civil Contingencies – Dealing with the High Priority Threats in Tier One and Coordinating the National Response to Threats to Security
  • Preparedness and Responsiveness – The Risks from Floods, Pandemics and Terrorist Attacks and Developing Plans for an Effective Recovery Phase
  • Preparing for High Impact, Low Probability Disasters and Identifying the Most Likely Sources of UK Terrorist Activity
  • Increasing Public and Personal Safety Through Improved Multi-Agency Coordination
11:30 Morning Coffee Break
11:45 Open Floor Discussion and Debate with Panel One
12:30 Networking Lunch
13:30 Panel Session Two:
Improving Multi-Agency Working to Prepare and Protect
  • Role of Emergency Services in Addressing Civil Disturbances and Ensuring Community Resilience
  • NHS Direct – First Point of Contact during a Crisis? Cross-Communication Between Emergency Services
  • Working with the Utilities Sector to Plan and Prepare Effectively for Disasters
  • Protecting Essential Transport Infrastructure From Attacks and Extreme Weather
  • Using Latest Technologies to Retain Communication During a Crisis and the Potential of Social Media for Disaster Management and Emergency Planning
14:30 Afternoon Coffee Break
14:45 Panel Session Three:
Community Resilience – Sharing Best Practice and Lessons Learned
  • Educating Communities to Ensure Public Awareness and Wider Understanding of the Risks
  • Building Resilient Communities – Community Resilience Action Plan
  • Supporting the Community – From Evacuation to Community Assistance Centres
  • Exercise Watermark – Testing the Nation’s Flood Resilience and August 2011 Riots: Lessons Learned From an Unexpected Emergency
  • Providing Case Studies of Good Practice to Enable Communities to Implement Successful Resilience Strategies
15:45 Chair's Summary and Closing Comments
16:00 Networking Reception
16:30 Close

Who Should Attend?

  • Emergency Planning Officers
  • Resilience and Disaster Recovery Officers
  • Emergency Responders
  • Ambulance Services
  • NHS Trusts and Hospitals
  • Fire Service
  • Police Service and Police Authorities
  • Civil Defence and Emergency Planning Consultants
  • Community Safety Teams and Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships
  • Transport Operators
  • Regulatory Bodies
  • Think Tanks
  • Disaster Recovery Charities and NGOs
  • Environmental Services and Sanitary Services
  • Environmental and Utilities Service Providers
  • Planning Officers
  • Sustainability Advisers
  • Climate Change Officers
  • Technology Providers
  • Local Authority Officers and Councillors
  • Central and Regional Government Agencies
  • Housing Officers and Managers
  • Community Cohesion Officers
  • Prevent Delivery Teams
  • Education Authorities, Headteachers and Citizenship Teachers
  • Schools, Colleges and Universities
  • Faith Organisations
  • Equal Opportunities Officers
  • Equality, Diversity and Human Rights Practitioners
  • Race Relations Practitioners and Race Equality Councils
  • Community Engagement Officers
  • Community Relations Advisers
  • Refugee and Asylum Support Officers
  • Social Inclusion Officers
  • Neighbourhood Renewal Officers
  • Telecommunications Organisations
  • Youth Offending Teams & Youth Engagement Teams
  • Hate Crime Units
  • Student Welfare Advisers
  • Third Sector Practitioners
  • Trade Union Representatives
  • Academics
  • Analysts and Researchers

How to Book

Phone: 0845 606 1535
Fax:     0845 606 1539
Email: bookings@publicpolicyexchange.co.uk