The Extreme Weather and Emergency Management Survey

Anna Wanless aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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Sam Stormer aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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Joseph T. Ripberger aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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Makenzie J. Krocak dNOAA/National Severe Storms Laboratory, Norman, Oklahoma
aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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Andrew Fox aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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David Hogg aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma
bCooperative Institute for Severe and High-Impact Weather Research and Operations, Norman, Oklahoma
dNOAA/National Severe Storms Laboratory, Norman, Oklahoma

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Hank Jenkins-Smith aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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Carol Silva aInstitute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma

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Scott E. Robinson eDepartment of Public Administration, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, Illinois

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Warren S. Eller fDepartment of Public Management, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, New York

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Abstract

National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters have many roles and responsibilities, including communication with core partners throughout the forecast and warning process to ensure that the information they are providing is relevant, understandable, and actionable. Although the NWS communicates to many groups, members of the emergency management community are among the most critical partners. However, little is known about the diverse population of emergency managers (EMs) and how they receive, process, and use forecast information. The Extreme Weather and Emergency Management Survey (WxEM) aims to fill this knowledge gap by 1) building a nationwide panel of EMs and 2) fielding routine surveys that include questions of relevance to NWS operations. The panel was built by creating a database with contact information from more than 4000 EMs across the country. An enrollment survey was sent to the list, and over 700 EMs agreed to participate in the project. Following enrollment, WxEM panelists receive surveys three–four times per year that address how EMs use NWS forecast information. These surveys cover a variety of subjects, with the goal of working with other researchers to develop surveys that address their research needs. By collaborating with other research groups to design short, focused surveys, the WxEM project will reduce the research burden on EMs and, at the same time, increase the quality and comparability of research data in the weather enterprise. The results will be shared with the NWS and the research community, and all data gathered from these surveys will be publicly available.

Significance Statement

The Extreme Weather and Emergency Management Survey aims to better understand how emergency managers use National Weather Service (NWS) forecast information via a series of surveys regularly distributed to a panel of emergency managers across the country. By collaborating with other researchers, these surveys will cover broad topics and should limit the number of participation requests sent to emergency managers. Results will be distributed to participants, researchers, and NWS forecasters. All data will be publicly available.

© 2023 American Meteorological Society. This published article is licensed under the terms of the default AMS reuse license. For information regarding reuse of this content and general copyright information, consult the AMS Copyright Policy (www.ametsoc.org/PUBSReuseLicenses).

Corresponding author: Anna Wanless, awanless@ou.edu

Abstract

National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters have many roles and responsibilities, including communication with core partners throughout the forecast and warning process to ensure that the information they are providing is relevant, understandable, and actionable. Although the NWS communicates to many groups, members of the emergency management community are among the most critical partners. However, little is known about the diverse population of emergency managers (EMs) and how they receive, process, and use forecast information. The Extreme Weather and Emergency Management Survey (WxEM) aims to fill this knowledge gap by 1) building a nationwide panel of EMs and 2) fielding routine surveys that include questions of relevance to NWS operations. The panel was built by creating a database with contact information from more than 4000 EMs across the country. An enrollment survey was sent to the list, and over 700 EMs agreed to participate in the project. Following enrollment, WxEM panelists receive surveys three–four times per year that address how EMs use NWS forecast information. These surveys cover a variety of subjects, with the goal of working with other researchers to develop surveys that address their research needs. By collaborating with other research groups to design short, focused surveys, the WxEM project will reduce the research burden on EMs and, at the same time, increase the quality and comparability of research data in the weather enterprise. The results will be shared with the NWS and the research community, and all data gathered from these surveys will be publicly available.

Significance Statement

The Extreme Weather and Emergency Management Survey aims to better understand how emergency managers use National Weather Service (NWS) forecast information via a series of surveys regularly distributed to a panel of emergency managers across the country. By collaborating with other researchers, these surveys will cover broad topics and should limit the number of participation requests sent to emergency managers. Results will be distributed to participants, researchers, and NWS forecasters. All data will be publicly available.

© 2023 American Meteorological Society. This published article is licensed under the terms of the default AMS reuse license. For information regarding reuse of this content and general copyright information, consult the AMS Copyright Policy (www.ametsoc.org/PUBSReuseLicenses).

Corresponding author: Anna Wanless, awanless@ou.edu
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