Category Archives: the conference

One week left for EMPA 2012 Earlybird Discount


The Emergency Media & Public Affairs Conference, at the Sebel Albert Park, Melbourne on 6th – 8th May 2012 will again be the prime forum in Australasia for emergency and disaster communicators.

The program is now on the website

You can download the latest EMPA Conference flyer at:

The conference opening keynote address will be delivered by Mark Scott, Managing Director of the ABC and other highlights include Craig Lapsley, Victoria’s Fire Services Commissioner Nancy Rigg, pioneer in US swiftwater rescue reform and Hugh Riminton from Network Ten.

The Media Panel session will be hosted by Bruce Esplin, former Emergency Services Commissioner.  The panel will include:

Jon Faine (ABC Mornings)

Kate McGrath (Chief of Staff, Nine Network)

Peter Rolfe (Senior Journalist, Sunday Herald Sun)

Phil Kafcaloudes (ABC Journalist & author)

The Earlybird Discount expires this Friday 2nd March.

There is also a Group Discount for 3 or more delegates from the same organisation


EMPA day 1 – an overview

Hi all,

Well it’s been a long and busy day here in Canberra for day one of the Emergency Media and Public Affairs conference for 2011. The day was a more casual approach, a workshop run in the ‘world cafe’ style. For those of you not familiar with world cafe (which was most of us!), the aim is to spilt into tables and have the level of discussion you have have with your friends if you opened that second bottle of wine. Quiet an interesting way of going about it, and one that I think worked very well.

The aim was to have varing degrees of emergency management experience represented on each table, along with a media representitive.

Firstly we were to discuss what common ground emergency media communicators and media staff have in common, then onto issues and differences.

Tables were rotating (not the tables, but the participants!) under the following topics:
Working to deadline
Gathering facts versus the information vaccum
Facts, rumours and misinformation
Emergency warnings versus editorial content
Text, tweet, blog…the citizen journalist
Access to spokespeople

Table leaders, if you will, summarised the discussions at the end of the alloted time, and notes were taken, with the aim of coming up with guidelines and principals that emergency media communicators and media staff can use as a guide for collaboration to build on. Over the course of the conference the principals will be drafted, with the aim of testing them out on Tuesday, the last day of the conference.

A reminder, you can follow the conference on Twitter, @EmergMediaConf, and by using the hashtag #EMPA2011.

-Nathan, @nathanmaddock

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EMPA is nearly here!

Hi all,

Well, we’re nearly there! The Emergency Media and Public Affairs conference kicks off Sunday in Canberra with a world  cafe workshop, facilitated by Anne Leadbeater, with papers being presented through Monday and Tuesday.  I’m really looking forward to it.

I’d like to thank Denis, Kristin, Susan, Simon, Axel, Steve and Anne who have posted guest blogs over the last few weeks. We’ve got a wide varity of papers to look forward to that I’m sure will generate some exciting debate. 

I’ll try and post daily updates, but make sure to follow EMPA on Twitter for updates throughout the Conference. Please join the conversation using the hashtag #EMPA.

– Nathan, @nathanmaddock

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