The Crisis Response Journal team has recently been reflecting what we do, and how we do it, says Kirsty McKinlay-Stewart. And now is the time to tell as many people as possible how we, together with our international family of experts, can truly work together, navigating the choppy, unpredictable waters of crises as we go.
(Image: Charles Taylor\123rf)
This blog differs from our usual content, not only because I am not a regular author, but also because we at CRJ HQ have been through some changes recently. Do not fear, I am in no way revealing any personal information here, so please keep reading! But we have been undergoing some internal reflection on what we do, and to what end.
Since its launch in 2004, the Crisis Response Journal has been a thought leadership and information hub that deals with all aspects of human-caused and natural disasters, mitigation, risk, resilience, business continuity and security.
CRJ’s fundamental ethos has always been to stand back and analyse the whole resilience cycle, joining up the dots between disciplines, frontline practitioners, analysts, corporate and governmental organisations, researchers and academia.
We continue to be the platform for sharing best practice across all aspects of crisis and disaster management and, with the support of our authors who provide our excellent content, we have become internationally renowned for producing issue after issue of great content. For over 15 years the CRJ has influenced thought among emergency professionals and will continue to do so in many years to come.
Our unquenchable thirst for knowledge means that our subscribers will continue to enjoy the quality of international thought-provoking, horizon-scanning and analytical content in future editions.
Since becoming a part of the CRJ team, I have seen the impact we have on the crisis world and, over the past 20 months I have been lucky to have met many of our authors, partners and subscribers. I am regularly reminded of the sense of community and how important this is; I feel fortunate to be involved in such a unique organisation. I have also noticed when attending events around the world, that the response CRJ receives is always extremely positive and the enthusiasm people have for what we do makes me very proud.
The CRJ team works closely with its Key Network Partners, as illustrated above, where we moderated a round-table at Farnborough Air Show to promote greater understanding between humanitarian organisations and cargo logistics operators
For the past six months we have been reflecting on all of our activities, asking ourselves: do they truly support our mission, and, crucially, do we provide what people want? Every organisation should to do this now and again and the results we found have helped us transform what we offer for organisations, while continuing to provide content that will give our readers information that is impartial, relevant, current and thought provoking. In a world where fake news (as covered in 13:2 and many other editions of CRJ) is a buzz phrase, we are confident that our journal tells the story, free from hidden agendas and political point scoring.
The results from our activity review have shown that companies no longer simply want, or need, traditional forms of advertising and instead, prefer a more subtle way of maximising international reach in the crisis and emergency field. The CRJ team has a collective network of crisis professionals that allows us to draw expertise and provide introductions across the globe. This is a truly valuable by-product of our collective lifetimes of professional engagement and networking. Add to this the extended networks, and we all have access to a world of connections.
Our networks include our global readership and partner networks comprising: Senior officers and strategists from national and local governments; fire and rescue services; police; emergency medical services; military; civil defence organisations; hospitals and medical facilities; emergency planners; critical infrastructure security and emergency response experts, including ports, airports, refineries, energy and water installations; non-governmental and humanitarian organisations; researchers, academia, educational and training institutions; the private sector; and homeland defence professionals.
When I think of our evolution, the song The times they are a changin’ always pops into my head. Bob Dylan wrote the song in 1964, but the lyrics are as relevant now as they were then. The only constant is that change needs to be embraced and not feared, as long as we learn along the way, of course.
A true force multiplier
This is where the CRJ comes into its own, and our international crisis family can truly work together, navigating the choppy unpredictable waters as we go. Dylan urges, “writers and critics who prophesise,” with their pens to unite, and that is, in effect, what our roving crisis and disaster experts provide for our publication.
What we confirmed during our business review is that businesses and organisations see real benefit from specific activities that act as a force multiplier for what they are already doing. Rather than reinventing the wheel or underestimating the specialist knowledge people have in their own organisation, we identified that, through a specific needs assessment, we could design and deliver a course of action spanning 12 months initially.
In order to create real long-term benefit, there needs to be a multi-faceted approach to turn the ripples in the water into waves. The CRJ Key Network Partnership was therefore created.
Becoming a Key Network Partner with CRJ provides an active element of our partners’ global business development and marketing strategy – entering into a working partnership with CRJ is more than just an advertising deal, it is a symbiotic, long-term relationship; if our partners flourish, so do we.
A major factor in the different levels of partnership is that we work to support our partners’ network growth, especially in areas where they are finding challenges. Our partners come in many different sizes of organisation and their needs will differ vastly – the bespoke nature of what we can do is therefore very attractive.
The CRJ Key Network Partnership provides intelligent marketing and awareness, thought leadership, market influencing and network exposure. We have created a tiered partnership that allows people to choose the package to suit their needs. In line with the command structure levels, we have Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum options.
We work with Underwriters Laboratories to highlight the dangers of fake goods, along with the links between fake goods, organised crime and terrorism
These options all include us highlighting the capabilities and range of our partners’ products and initiatives to our international audience across all relevant sectors. We do this through a combination of editorial and advertising coverage, social media exposure and bespoke circulation that is specifically targeted at the relevant decision-makers and personnel.
The CRJ team makes direct introductions, electronically, in person and through our bespoke networking events. As influential leaders in our field, we expose our network partners to opportunities that raise the profile of their products and services at international events. If the CRJ team is at an event, our partners are too.
This is no hollow offer – in the past year we have been, or will be, active participants in several events, where our team is involved in judging, speaking, sourcing speakers and chairing sessions. These include: Milipol Paris/Doha/Singapore – workshop chair and speaker identification, Innovation Awards; UK Security Expo 2017 – workshop chair; ISNR Abu Dhabi 2018 – official event crisis management partner and involved in judging the Innovation Awards, chairing the Innovation Awards Ceremony, as well as speaking roles; SNSR 2018 Saudi Arabia – official crisis management partner, speakers and Innovation Award judging; EENA Conference 2018 – Masterclass chair; Travel Risk Conference, London 2018 – speaker; InterDrone 2018 (Las Vegas) – workshop chair; International Security Expo & International Crisis Response Expo 2018 – advisory council membership and event speaking roles; and UK Counter Terror Expo & Ambition Expo – workshop organisers.
We are also media partners at most major conferences relating to security and crisis management including: International Aid & Trade; Australia and New Zealand Search & Rescue Conference; and Aidex, to name just a few
Having mentioned all the new options however, traditional advertising is also available – we work with you in the way that you require, leading to tangible results.
And I must emphasise that all the offerings and opportunities outlined in this article are just the start – we are always keen to try new ideas and creative, intelligent ways of getting our partners’ messages across, so if there are any further ways we can help, we are happy to do so – let’s explore how we can work together!