The Black Saturday fires devastated Australia and shocked the world. Now, the Country Fire Authority of Victoria has become a leading example of the use of social media for emergency management, winning this year’s Australian eGovernment award.

Martin Anderson, CFA’s Digital Media Manager and Australian Government 2.0 Innovator of the Year for 2012, explains how the experience of the February 2009 fires highlighted the importance of social communication tools in emergency situations, and that even within a command-and-control environment, agencies need to look outside the box, be flexible and improvise.

What I’m trying to do is explore and learn more myself, and also expose the principles of crowdsourcing and the benefits it can bring to the emergency services.

About Martin Anderson

Martin Anderson is the Digital Media Manager for the Country Fire Aurhority of Victoria, with a background in communications and journalism. During that time he has helped position the organisation as a recognised leader in the digital / social media field. His goal is to continue to use his diverse communication skills to help inform and engage people in ways that enhance their personal and working lives and encourage the development of strong, resilient communities both on and offline.

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