PD2.1 Building a Consistent Message: Establishing Ground Rules for the Weather Enterprise

Monday, 11 January 2016: 4:00 PM
Room 335/336 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Richard Smith, NOAA/NWSFO, Norman, OK; and D. Accardo, J. D. Eachus, E. Holthaus, G. M. Eosco, R. Jennings, J. T. Johnson, and D. Kenny

Over the last decade, great advances in meteorological technology, models and data visualization techniques have been matched by increasing access to these tools and forecasts, especially through social media. As members of the forecasting community, including broadcasters, private sector companies offering specialized services, National Weather Service forecasters, and emergency managers all adjust to these new technologies and communication media, messages have become increasingly complex, raising concerns that this increase in volume is being compounded by message inconsistency. Scholars in the social and behavioral sciences, especially in risk communication, point to inconsistency of message as a key challenge in assuring that members of various publics can be best-empowered to make decisions to protect themselves when hazardous weather threatens.

As this issue has risen in importance within the meteorological community, there have been calls to work together as a forecasting enterprise to identify ground rules that could preserve consistency while still allowing for competition. This panel will assemble representatives from across the enterprise, including broadcast, emergency management, private sector, social media, academic, and federal partners, to unpack the idea of message consistency and - with help from the audience - identify ground rules for creating consistent messages

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