Why the Aston CRISIS Centre?
Since 2001, members of the Aston Centre for Research Into Safety and Security (The Aston CRISIS Centre) at Aston Business School have been researching and consulting to safety and security related organizations. Our range of projects have had widespread impact on policy and practice including: the writing of new law, informing high-level policy advisors, working with a wide range of governments on evacuation preparedness, training groups of international emergency managers, transferring research findings to international governments, running a UK seminar network on safety and security.
Given the heightened focus on safety and security (in its broadest sense), the Aston CRISIS Centre emerged from a need in government and private organisations for high quality support in preparing their operations and their people for new global challenges. The Aston CRISIS Centre has grown in staff, projects and ambition and continues to work with the world’s governments, bringing policy transformations through evidence-based research.
We have projects that are funded by friendly governments, the European Commission (Directorate-General: Freedom, Security and Justice) as well as, in the UK; Economic and Social Research Council; Office of the Deputy Prime Minister; Communities and Local Government; Department for Transport, Security and Contingencies Directorate; Health and Safety Executive; HM Nuclear Installations Inspectorate; global and local, public and private organisations.
To conduct research that will have meaningful and widespread impact on the preparedness to respond to safety and security-related issues.
Achieving the mission
The Aston CRISIS Centre works across five levels of analyses:
- Individual level: To understand what individuals can do at work, home or elsewhere to best prepare themselves to ensure their safety and security.
- Organisational level: To investigate the guidance that can be issued to organizations in order that they might best enhance the safety and security of their operations and their people.To understand
- City Level: To work with analysts and officials at the city level to support evidence-based policy making and the development of robust local plans for safety and security.
- National level: To continue to work with national governments in supporting their preparedness for responding to safety and security related issues. This includes national regulators who have responsibility for ensuring the safety and security of operations across industry
- Continental & Global level: To support governments across the world to research and strengthen their preparedness for responding to major catastrophic incidents through coordinated research and/or comparative studies.
The range of specialists who collaborate to analyse these five levels is extremely broad. For example,
- Operational Research modellers use qualitative and quantitative analytical techniques for performance and option evaluation
- Specialists in Simulation, Statistics and Geographical Information Systems bring techniques to mathematically evaluate potential operational solutions
- Psychologists help us to understand human responses to security incidents and safety culture
- Marketing specialists contribute to branding safety and security messages for maximum impact
- Operations and Risk Management contributes skills in building robust systems and procedures
- Emergency Managers bring domain specific expertise in command and control
|Dr Pavel Albores is a Lecturer in Operations Management at Aston Business School. His area of specialisation is Discrete Event Simulation and the application of OR techniques to emergency response. He is also active in the area of humanitarian supply chains and humanitarian logistics. more|
|Dr Christopher Brewster is as Lecturer in Information Technology. His current research interests concern knowledge management, in other words the role of structured knowledge (such as Linked Data) and unstructured knowledge (such as text and social media) in decision processes. He focuses particularly on the application of Semantic Web technologies in the agri-food domain and in emergency response. more|
|Dr Patrick Tissington is a Chartered Psychologist specialising in the study of emergency decision making and crisis management. He has over 10 years experience of working with the emergency services and is a Visiting Fellow at the UK Fire Service College where he has trained Fire Officers at all levels in incident command and leadership. more|
|Dr Judy Scully is Director of Corporate Partnerships and is based in the Department of Work and Organisational Psychology of Aston Business School.Her research profile includes knowledge transfer, organisational development (OD), HRM, and innovative policy development in the public, private and third sectors. more|
|Kevin Arbuthnot Kevin Arbuthnot became a firefighter in 1975. He was promoted to Assistant Chief Fire Officer, (head of operations), in West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS). more|