On 8th November 2017, experts from across Europe gathered in Dublin to participate in the ResiStand workshop on the pre-standardisation process and further development of potential standardisation items. ResiStand is a two-year EU funded project which aims to identify new ways to improve the crisis management and disaster resilience capabilities of the European Union and individual Member States through standardisation. The workshop brought ResiStand’s partners together with 12 experts working in the area of standardisation and disaster resilience. The participants, who are members of CEN/TC 391 on societal and citizen security, represented organisations including Berlin Feuerwehr, MSB (Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency), ERNCIP, ÚNMZ, DG HOME, and the French Ministry of Interior.
The workshop kicked off with a presentation on the steps envisaged for the pre-standardisation ResiStand Process by partners EU-VRi and NEN. As one of the projects main outputs, the ResiStand process will define how new ideas, improvements, inventions, requirements or research results originating from any stakeholder can be transformed into new standardisation items. Following the presentation, discussion focused on the current issues in the standardisation process for societal security. The workshop participants argued how there is insufficient involvement of first responders in standardisation activities as they are not aware of what standardisation can offer them, they lack motivation to participate, and participating in the standardisation process incurs costs. Additionally, participants outlined how in some cases standards do not fulfill the direct needs of first responders. Participants furthermore discussed how to test whether the development of a standard is suitable to address a certain problem or need. The importance of considering national rules and regulations and standards in relation to European standards was also acknowledged.
The second session focused on discussing potential items for standardisation. Participants were given a list of 17 potential items for standardisation and were asked to select one or two that they would further develop using the ResiStand Assessment Framework (RAF) Lite. Completing the RAF Lite is the first step in asssessing standardisation initiatives in the domain of disaster resilience and crisis management to ensure that the efforts invested in the production of standardisation deliverables are justified. Based on their experience of completing the RAF Lite, participants outlined how exchanging the evaluation information is beneficial. When moving on to complete the full version of the RAF participants that had affinity with the potential standardisation item were enthusiastic about using the RAF to assess their item outlining how it is a great tool that provides a good checklist for the development of standardisation items. However, some improvements were identified, including simplifying the RAF and reducing the number of questions, and ensuring that only relevant questions are included.
The feedback from the workshop participants was very valuable to the ResiStand partners who will use the feedback as inputs to the further development of the RAF, and the ResiStand Process in general.
Merel Haverhals from the Netherlands Standardization Institute, NEN, commented how the workshop “gave us the opportunity to connect to people who have been actively involved in societal and citizen security standardisation for a long time. This base of experience provided us with well-grounded feedback on the tools we are developing within the project. It brings us one step closer to a process that guides people towards standardization within the area of crisis management and disaster resilience”.
To learn more about the ResiStand Process and the ResiStand Assessment Framework (RAF), save the date for our final conference taking place on 22 March 2018 in Berlin, Germany.