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Skip to 0 minutes and 11 secondsWelcome to Week Three of Emergency Planning and Preparedness. You’re already on your way to an in-depth study of the subject and by the end of this unit, you’ll really be able to grasp what emergency preparedness looks like for a resilient organisation. Before we get into the depths of emergency preparedness however, it’s time to clarify a few things and in particular deal with a common misconception. When people think about emergency preparedness, it often gets conflated with the topic of emergency planning but it’s important to recognise that there’s a difference between these two principals and the difference can sometimes just be as simple

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 secondsas this: Emergency planning is part of the process of emergency preparedness. Preparedness is the all-encompassing state of readiness to face an emergency or a disaster. To get this week started, our tutor is going to lead a discussion on what we mean by emergency preparedness and you’ll be guided towards some literature which will help you understand this concept. We’ll look at the role that elements such as business continuity play in creating a state of emergency preparedness, but we’ll also examine subject such as wide area emergencies where simple emergency planning might be insufficient to cope with the scale of the incident. Finally, we’ll examine the suggestion that there is nothing natural about disasters.

Skip to 1 minute and 34 secondsAll too often when an organisation, a community or a society is overwhelmed by a disaster, it’s tempting to suggest that this natural event, be it meteorological or geological, is beyond the scale of human readiness. We’ll look at some authors who dispute this fact and who suggest that while you may not always be able to plan for a disaster, you can always prepare.


In the second course for the Coventry University programme Emergency Planning and Preparedness you will explore in more detail the emergency preparedness process and compare different approaches for becoming successfully prepared.

This week you will…

  • explore the emergency preparedness process

  • examine some of the challenges of creating an effective framework

  • analyse different approaches to emergency preparendess

  • differentiate between preparedness and plan

  • explore ideas and concepts that underpin our understanding of emergency preparedness.

We will also hear from experts such Rebecca Norton, a freelance consultant specialising in crisis management and resilience, who has considerable experience of developing frameworks for organisations. She will talk about some of the challenges associated with developing emergency preparedness in different organisations.

Introducing you educators

Image of Emma Parkinson, Lead Educator

Your Lead Educator on the course is Emma Parkinson, who is Senior Lecturer and Course Director for MSc Emergency Management and Resilience at Coventry University. She is an experienced emergency planner, specialising in crowd safety.

image of Michael Gilbert

Emma is joined by Michael Gilbert, who has extensive experience in the field of emergency preparedness and planning.

You can follow them by selecting the links to their FutureLearn profile pages and selecting ‘Follow’. That way, you’ll be able to see all the comments that they make.

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This video is from the free online course:

Understanding Emergency Preparedness

Coventry University

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