Risk Communication and Awareness for policy makers and media

Seeking to inform and promote the Risk Communication and Awareness of Policy Makers and Media stakeholders for the improvement of preparedness in critical decision making and information dissemination.


Policymakers and media professionals lack sufficient risk communication and awareness regarding Extreme Wildfire Events, leading to inadequate decision-making processes, public misinformation, and ineffective dissemination of critical information. 

Why the Problem exists?

The problem of insufficient risk communication and awareness among policymakers and media professionals arises from several factors. Firstly, the comparative novelty of fire events in some locations, the complex nature of wildfires, including their behaviour, impacts, and mitigation strategies, requires a comprehensive understanding to make informed decisions and effectively communicate with the public. However, limited access to up-to-date scientific information, conflicting perspectives, and the absence of specialised training hinder the ability of policymakers and media professionals to grasp the nuances of Extreme Wildfire Events. Additionally, resource constraints, time pressures, and the fast-paced nature of news reporting further contribute to the problem, leading to misinformation and inadequate communication to the public. 

Looking for solutions that completely or partially solve the following:

  • Comprehensive and directed training programmes. 
  • Collaboration and networking among policymakers, media professionals, and fire management experts. 
  • Mechanisms for policymakers and media professionals to access reliable sources of information.
  • Risk Perception and Education. 


  • Customisation and adaptability to meet the specific needs and contexts of policymakers and media professionals in different regions, considering. variations in fire regimes, governance structures, and media landscapes. 
  • Promote transparency and evidence-based approaches in decision-making processes and news reporting. 
  • Rigour and credibility of the sources of information. 


  • Resource Constraints such as funding limitations, personnel, and infrastructure. 
  • Language and Cultural Considerations: Account for linguistic and cultural diversity within the frontline. 
  • Complex Policy-making Processes. 
  • Media Landscape and the fast-paced nature of news reporting and the pressures faced by media professionals in disseminating information. 

Fire Management Phase(s)

Prevention & Preparedness.

Living Labs

Germany – The Netherlands Living LabBulgaria Living Lab; Sardinia – Italy Living Lab; Chile Living Lab.

Voice of the Living Lab(s)

  “Thus, there is no pressure from the local public, media or NGOs, as there are not many direct victims of the fires. Media coverage of the recovery is not a priority, as is the fire event itself. The passivity of the media and institutions (investigative service) is even greater when the causes and agents remain unclear or not denied“.

Bulgaria Living Lab

  “In wildfire-risk emerging countries, risk awareness is usually low across all stakeholders, ranging from legislation for its management to implementing strategies to prevent wildfire events through awareness campaigns and landscape management and design (green space, nature and forest areas, and design of houses and gardens). It is the case for the Netherlands, which as an emergent country, wildfire management often focuses on fighting fire rather than preventing it (Stoof, 2022)“.

Germany – The Netherlands Living Lab


 “In recent years, wildfire risks have slowly gained relevance in social media due to their increasing incidence and their portrayal as of concern in local media. However, the challenge of rising nature fire risk awareness and the role of society in it remains untackled (Oswald, 2016)“.

Germany – The Netherlands Living Lab



 The stated problem exists due to the lack of financial resources dedicated to training, poor planning activities towarding the issue at institutional level. We perceive who is in charge to plan is far from the reality and needs of firefighters, underestimating fire risk. Politicians don’t feel to be responsible for taking decisions and it seems the previous experiences do not add new knowledge to take new decisions. Beyond all this, it seems a no environmental culture is the latest why to justify all these approaches“.

Sardinia – Italy Living Lab


  “The problem exists because of the lack of a clear policy. Decision makers do not act specifically and their actions are carried out only for the duration of the emergency. Therefore, it is not established as a long-term priority by the political and legislative world. Being temporary events, as the months of fires pass, the topic stops being discussed until the next season starts again. Added to this, fires occur mostly away from the capital city (Santiago) and the real impact caused by the fires from the economic, environmental and social aspects is not visible for the major policy makers (since there is no monetary value, the real impact is never measured, since they are intangibles)“.

Chile Living Lab

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