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Communicating risk through a DSS: A coastal risk centred empirical analysis
Kane, I.O.; Vanderlinden, J.P.; Baztan, J.; Touili, N.; Claus, S. (2014). Communicating risk through a DSS: A coastal risk centred empirical analysis. Coast. Eng. 87: 240-248. hdl.handle.net/10.1016/j.coastaleng.2014.01.007
In: Coastal Engineering: An International Journal for Coastal, Harbour and Offshore Engineers. Elsevier: Amsterdam; Lausanne; New York; Oxford; Shannon; Tokyo. ISSN 0378-3839, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine
Author keywords
    Perception; Social representation; Risk communication; Decision support system; Vulnerability; Resilience

Project Top | Authors 
  • Innovative coastal technologies for safer European coasts in a changing climate, more

Authors  Top 
  • Kane, I.O.
  • Vanderlinden, J.P., more
  • Baztan, J.
  • Touili, N.
  • Claus, S., more

Abstract
    Risk communication has recently evolved from the design of unidirectional (from scientists to the public) information flow toward a more integrative deliberative procedures (involving scientists, policymakers, stakeholders and the general public) aimed at reconciling diverging social constructs of risk. Furthermore, risk communication is seen now as an activity that is transverse to the risk governance process as a whole. Risk communication is therefore part of the preassessment, appraisal, characterization/evaluation and management phases of risk governance. At the same time the development of risk management Decision Support Systems are increasingly geared at facilitating decision making while taking into account and streamlining all the phases of the risk governance process. These recent trends lead to a redefinition of the role of risk communication in the context of the development of DSS.This paper explores these issues by analysing how risk communication can be integrated into THESEUS's DSS. A first step of this analysis consists of applying grounded theory to analyse stakeholders' perception in three of THESEUS's application settings. We then compare this theorization to the grounded theorization of the foundational model of THESEUS's DSS. The result of this comparison points to diverging, yet not incompatible, paradigmatic views on the nature of coastal risks. These divergences are further analysed through semi-structured interviews with key informants involved in the development of the DSS.Building on these results we develop a communication scheme that should allow a progressive convergence of paradigmatic views occurring through the use of the DSS; we are thus proposing that the DSS in itself be a locus where risk communication as a deliberative practice occurs. In order to achieve this we propose that the cognitive pathways followed by DSS users be proactively designed and involves integrative exchanges between designers, users and policy makers.

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