ITEC 2015: at the heart of global training issues

Following a spate of international natural disasters, next month’s ITEC conference and exhibition will reflect the continued increase in co-operation and cross sector training between military, para-military and civil powers. Bringing critical training issues under a global spotlight, ITEC 2015 will present a range of experts drawn from across the spectrum of defence, security, medical, emergency management and related sectors to discuss how recent developments have shaped training requirements. ITEC takes place at the PVA Expo in Prague 28-30 April.

Over the last decade, a deadly wave of earthquakes, volcanoes, flooding and tropical cyclones has caused hundreds of thousands of fatalities, leaving many millions more displaced. Unpredictable and highly volatile, the most recent catastrophe in Vanuatu demonstrates the devastating impact of these events on the communities left struggling to rebuild their lives.

The decisions made during such scenarios can mean a difference between life and death. David Jones, CEO, Rescue Global, a UK charity and global NGO dedicated to saving lives through Disaster Risk Reduction and Response, will use ITEC’s Civil Military Cooperation (CIMIC) Training panel discussion on Thursday 30 April to brief on the vital work that is currently underway to help prepare and assist communities affected by natural disasters.

Rescue Global is a UK charity, US not-for-profit and International NGO. It champions a systematic and holistic approach to disaster risk reduction and response, throughout all phases of the disaster cycle: mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. The organisation’s mission is to save lives by empowering decision makers who work in the Disaster Risk Reduction and Response environment. Rescue Global also conducts disaster reconnaissance, liaison and mentoring missions worldwide.

“Interoperability, decision making and communications are three crucial factors in a successful disaster response operation. Preparing those responsible for crisis response to operate effectively in such complex scenarios means that training and simulation is of fundamental importance” said David Jones, of Rescue Global. “The CIMIC discussion at ITEC will focus on the need for mutually supportive methodology in crisis situations and will present a range of recommendations to assist in the sharing of information and new practices between the civil and military communities”.

The CIMIC panel session will further address the provision of swift, seamless and coordinated action in the wake of a natural disaster, as well as the emerging trend of civil and military cooperation. Chaired by Lt Col Gareth Davies Land CBRN Doctrine Writer, Directorate of Land Warfare, UK Army the theme will include debate on innovative technology, training approaches, organisational requirements and missions and lessons learned.

Lt. Col. Davies explains “the requirement for civil-military cooperation in the wake of major disasters presents both challenges and opportunities for the training and simulation sector. Increasingly effective civil-military relations will no doubt lead to more efficient disaster management and this can be achieved through the ongoing development of joint training exercises and innovative simulation systems”.He continued “Further, many civilian organisations do not have access to the sophisticated training progressions that Armies have; this strengthens the requirement for a range of training systems and simulations that train, educate and test individuals and teams. CIMIC will remain a high priority for many global militaries and ITEC is an opportunity to identify and explore ways to strengthen these collaborations to ensure those effected by natural disasters are supported by an experienced and united force”.

Lt Col Davies and David Jones will be joined by Dr Susanne Schunder-Tatzber, HSSE Department Head of Corporate Health Management, of the Austrian oil and gas company OMV AG and is also representing the International Red Cross; Dr Agostino Miozzo, Italian Civil Protection, and Jean Marchal, Capability, Armament & Technology, Project Officer Systems of Systems, Space Modelling & Simulation and Experimentation, European Defence Agency.

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