This past week has been busy for #SMEM, #VOST and the fledgling Virtual EMA, as interest and collaboration in all aspects of #SMEM increases. Keeping up with colleague Cheryl Bledsoe ‘s work in this space presented quite the challenge alone, as she skipped seemingly effortlessly between meetings, google docs, conference calls, brainstorming maps, summary notes, notification exercise, VOST training exercise, blog post and interview for a post at Emergency Management Magazine. For those who may have missed these fun and informative moments, here are some highlights.
On Thursday January 30th, there was a call for anyone interested to review the mission, vision and values of the proposed new Virtual Emergency Management Association, to establish project based work groups and to plan an in-person gathering in Virginia in early March. Out of an initial group of some 60 people expressing interest in the notion of a Virtual Emergency Management Association, 25% were present on the call and NEMA won the prize for #MostSupportiveStateStatus with 5 people signed up from New Mexico. Time zone prevented others from joining in, but the speed of progress is impressive. No grass growing under the feet of these folks! There are now 18 EM colleagues collaborating in working groups to set up 3 initial committees. These are:
- Organizational Development Committee: 8 signed up
- Branding and Online Presence Committee: 6 signed up
- Event Planning & Outreach Committee: 4 signed up
Save the Date
March 10th 2014 – in-person meeting at 3p EST in VA, remote participation being worked on.
How to keep up
Follow #VEMA and @VirtualEMA on twitter.
VOST Leadership Coalition
Friday January 31st was the regular monthly VLC call, which has grown to about 80. For the first time, representatives spanned three continents, with VOST Leaders calling in from across the US, New Zealand and Norway. Inevitably, the time zone as well as the language barrier are challenges for some of the most enthusiastic members to participate fully, but it’s already clear that VOST and the VOST Leadership Coalition is gaining traction internationally. Traditional EM geographical boundaries continue to be bridged by the VLC, not only in the US, but worldwide, as evidenced by the increasingly broad spectrum of participation and collaboration on the monthly calls.
Guest Speaker (15 minute presentation)
“Research on Social Media Behaviors” by David Horne, Ph.D. and Ingrid Martin, Ph.D. from CSU Long Beach, CA
CSU is developing a research proposal to study how social media is wild-fired. With a pilot study already completed in Trinity County in California, where they found that the adoptions of social media follows the “diffusion of innovation curve”, they’re now aiming to do a follow-up study statewide, and also want to look at the interface between practitioners and consumers.
Barents Rescue (Nordic Crisis Exercise) – Kjell Brataas
Orange County Superior Court Social Media Exercise – Justin Mammen
Save the Date
Next call: Friday February 28th, 12:30 PT, 15:30 ET
How to keep up
#VOST on twitter, this blog, and for members, there’s a complete archive here.
VOST Exercise – #smembowl
‘Here’s a newsflash: I could care less about sports.’ said Cheryl Bledsoe, sporting her football earrings and wearing blue.
Nevertheless, she threw her annual virtual Super Bowl Party as part of her mission to train, mentor and expose other emergency managers to the concept of Virtual Operation Support Teams. An impromptu, open house pot luck event, guests were invited to find pictures of damage throughout the local community, and identify comments in the live stream that met specific criteria that Cheryl set. The Game Parameters were placed on a Google Doc to advertise the exercise, and everyone who wanted to participate was added into one Skype-chat to coordinate via text-based chatting. Cheryl blogged about the fun on www.SM4EM.org, which was quickly followed up by Gerald Baron in an Emergency Management Magazine blog post “Superbowl provides opportunity to build VOST experience”, where he says,
“Virtual Operation Support Teams are one of the most important developments in emergency management of the past decade. They come out of the understanding that “it’s not my emergency” anymore, that the public has important roles to play in responding to disasters and that digital communications makes such participation possible and necessary.”
Save the Date (and the earrings)
February 1st 2015
How to keep up
Follow #smembowl and connect with @CherylBle on twitter.
Did I miss anything? Please leave comments and check back each week for updates.