Social media and its impact on crisis communication: Case studies of Twitter use in emergency management in Australia and New Zealand

Flew, Terry, Bruns, Axel, Burgess, Jean E., Crawford, Kate, & Shaw, Frances (2013) Social media and its impact on crisis communication: Case studies of Twitter use in emergency management in Australia and New Zealand. In ICA Regional Conference : Communication and Social Transformation, 8-10 November 2013, Shanghai, China. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

There is a growing awareness worldwide of the significance of social media to communication in times of both natural and human-created disasters and crises. While the media have long been used as a means of broadcasting messages to communities in times of crisis – bushfires, floods, earthquakes etc. – the significance of social media in enabling many-to-many communication through ubiquitous networked computing and mobile media devices is becoming increasingly important in the fields of disaster and emergency management.

This paper undertakes an analysis of the uses made of social media during two recent natural disasters: the January 2011 floods in Brisbane and South-East Queensland in Australia, and the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand. It is part of a wider project being undertaken by a research team based at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, that is working with the Queensland Department of Community Safety (DCS) and the EIDOS Institute, and funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC) through its Linkages program. The project combines large-scale, quantitative social media tracking and analysis techniques with qualitative cultural analysis of communication efforts by citizens and officials, to enable both emergency management authorities and news media organisations to develop, implement, and evaluate new social media strategies for emergency communication.

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ID Code: 63707
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: social media, Twitter, emergency management, natural disasters, crisis communication, CEDM
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Communication Technology and Digital Media Studies (200102)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Media Studies (200104)
Divisions: Past > Research Centres > ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation
Current > Research Centres > Centre for Emergency & Disaster Management
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Past > Institutes > Institute for Creative Industries and Innovation
Past > Schools > Journalism, Media & Communication
Funding:
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 The Authors
Deposited On: 24 Oct 2013 23:04
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2016 05:33

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