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Invitation Side-Event at the “Fachtagung Katastrophenvorsorge”: Is contributing all that matters? Facets of different forms of civil society engagement in disaster response

News from Oct 14, 2022

Together with the Federal Office of Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance (BBK), the Federal Agency for Technical Relief (THW), and the German Red Cross (DRK), the Disaster Research Unit (DRU) is organizing a workshop at this year's “Fachtagung Katastrophenvorsorge” on the topic “Is contributing all that matters? Facets of different forms of civil society engagement in disaster response” in the context of the research project ATLAS-ENGAGE. The workshop will be held digitally on 25th October 2022 from 5:00pm to 6:30pm.

The workshop deals with current developments in disaster-related volunteering. Together, we will discuss the opportunities and challenges associated with various types of engagement: what forms of cooperation exist, and where are the limits of collective disaster relief activities.

In addition to the traditionally affiliated and ‘official’ volunteers in population protection in Germany (incl. civil protection and civil defense), there is a variety of ‘unofficial’ volunteers who contribute or would like to contribute to disaster recovery: while some of these volunteers cooperate with authorities and organizations with security tasks (BOS), others operate completely spontaneously and independently. BOS and researchers are working to gain an overview of the forms of engagement, to regulate responsibilities, and to improve communication and coordination structures.

The aim of the workshop is to exchange and discuss current developments and perspectives on volunteering before, during and after disasters. We will share insights from the ongoing ATLAS-ENGAGE project, which conducts a meta-analysis of research projects and operational approaches to diverse forms of engagement in civil protection. Together, we will discuss and sort out the opportunities and challenges associated with various types of engagement, what forms of cooperation exist, where the limits of joint disaster relief activities lie, and which implementation paths and hurdles exist for concepts of cooperation.

Professionals in population protection, researchers, and anyone interested in the involvement of different volunteering types in disaster response are welcome to join the workshop. Contributions are provided by the DRU, the BBK, the THW and the DRK, while all participants are invited to take part in interactive discussions and joint reflections. 

Cordial invitation to everyone interested! Here you can find more information about the workshop contents and the program of the symposium.

In addition, the ATLAS-ENGAGE project is represented by Prof. Dr. Martin Voss in the workshop " Save - Protect - Prepare. Heat action plans in response to the challenges of extreme heat in climate change" with an input on volunteering in the context of heat waves.

Here you can register for the symposium free of charge.


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Berlin Southern Theory Lecture