Risk management: a proposal for communication strategies

Michele Fontana, Mattia De Amicis, Matteo Rossetti, Carolina Garcia


Disasters related to natural hazards have increased in the last few decades. This increment makes it necessary to develop non-structural risk prevention and mitigation measures to improve people’s safety. An effective non-structural measure that can improve the preparedness of the population is a locally adapted communication campaign that is focused on natural hazards. We have developed a hypothetical communication campaign for a specific area in the north of Italy, in which hydro-geological risk is of considerable importance. The content of the campaign is defined by the combination of the requirements of the law with the results of a survey conducted in the study area. The aim of the survey is to evaluate the level of risk perception among the residents, and their attitudes towards prevention activities. The operative procedure of the campaign is modeled on advertising strategies. The campaign is designed to reach each family, and it is aimed at affecting people’s everyday life through a horizontal communication strategy that involves flyers, billboards, umbrellas and a website. The use of umbrellas as a medium for the campaign is the key. People mostly use umbrellas when it rains. Rain is linked with hydrogeological risk. As the content of the campaign is printed on the umbrellas, each time people use these umbrellas, they remember the campaign. The campaign is integrated into a broader communication program that includes meetings with stakeholders, activities in schools, and public conferences. The final goal is to foster the creation of a shared knowledge about risk in the whole population.


Risk management; Communication campaign; Civil protection plan; Hydrogeological hazard; Risk awareness

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4401/ag-5521
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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X