EU Horizon 2020 IMPACT Project - Impact of Cultural Aspects in the Management of Emergencies in Public Transport

Trains at a railway station

Description

Overview: EU Horizon 2020 IMPACT Project investigates influence of cross-cultural aspects on the behaviour and management of crowds during emergencies in transport terminals. The project focuses on three major transport domains: aviation, rail and maritime.

The IMPACT Project Consortium comprises eight partners from six countries, including University of Leeds (UK), VU University Amsterdam (NL), Varna University of Management (BG), Anadolu University (TR), Deep Blue (IT), PROPRS Ltd. (UK), Nuovo Trasporto Viaggiatori (IT), and Maritime Office in Gdynia (PL).

Within the IMPACT Project, University of Leeds is leading Work Package 1 (WP1) which focuses on the development of a psycho-social and cross-cultural theoretical framework of crowd behaviour and management in transport terminals, and is also contributing to the work conducted as part of other work packages.

Key topics: Crowd behaviour, crowd management, cross-cultural, cultural differences, emergencies, transport

Objectives: The main objectives of the EU Horizon 2020 IMPACT project are to:

  • Develop a theoretical framework of cross-cultural and psycho-social crowd behaviour and management in transport terminals (WP1).
  • Develop a computational agent-based simulation model incorporating cultural aspects of human behaviour into crowd simulations and validating other project outputs (e.g., the theoretical framework and the communication solutions) (WP2).
  • Produce a cultural risk assessment methodology and mitigation actions (WP3). 
  • Develop multi-lingual Computer-Based Training (CBT) framework for public transport operators and first respondents, incorporating cultural aspects into risk assessment materials and procedures (WP3).
  • Design culture-specific emergency communication solutions to support effective communication between public transport operators and passengers (WP4).
  • Design a cultural-based multi-media training framework supporting management of emergencies in a multicultural site (WP5).
  • Disseminate best practices and policy recommendations to relevant stakeholders (WP6).
  • Promote communication, dissemination and exploitation of the IMPACT Project results in industrial and scientific domains (WP7).

The above tasks are based on the review of current best practice and academic literature, primary and secondary data collection and analyses, and validation activities, with input from passengers, IMPACT Project end-users, security and safety officials, public transport operators, and other stakeholders throughout all research stages.

Impact

Results and dissemination: Research conducted as part of WP1 led to the development of a theoretical framework describing various aspects of staff and passenger behaviour within a transport terminal in routine and emergency situations. The framework is based upon the integration of findings from the state-of-the-art literature review of crowd behaviour and management (Deliverable 1.1), data collection activities within Task 1.2 (Deliverable 1.2), and additional research activities forming part of Task 1.3 (reported in Deliverable 1.3). The framework considers both social and technical aspects of human behaviour in complex transport environments including elements such as the terminal profile and human characteristics, the physical environment of a transport terminal, staff and passenger activities within a terminal, passenger and staff behaviour and response during emergencies, and psycho-social and cross-cultural characteristics and their impact on human behaviour in transport terminals.

Within the wider IMPACT Project, WP1 forms the theoretical foundation for all other work packages contributing to the development of a computational agent-based simulation model (WP2), cultural risk assessment methodology (WP3), cultural-based emergency communication framework (WP4), and cultural-based training framework (WP5).

For more information, visit the IMPACT Project website: http://www.impact-csa.eu/

Publications and outputs

Three deliverables were completed as part of WP1:

  • Robinson, M. A., Cichomska, K., Davis, M., Minkov, M., Blagoev, V., van der Wal, N., Turhan, U., Karbownik, A., Giuricin, A., Rozzi, S., & Tedeschi, A. (2015). D1.1 – Review and Critical Analysis of Multi-Cultural Crowd Behaviour in Emergencies. IMPACT Project, report for the European Commission.  
  • Minkov, M., Cichomska, K., Robinson, M., Davis, M., Blagoev, V., Turhan, U., Giuricin, A., Dambra, C., Rozzi, S., Tedeschi, A., Golfetti, A. (2016). D1.2 – Empirical dataset and results. IMPACT Project, report for the European Commission.
  • Cichomska, K., Robinson, M., Minkov, M., Davis, M., Blagoev, V., van der Wal., N., Karbownik, A., Sengur, F., Turhan, U., Giuricin, A., Dambra, C., Rozzi, S., Tedeschi, A., & Golfetti, A. (2016). D1.3 – Theoretical framework of cross-cultural and psycho-social crowd behaviour and management in transport terminals. IMPACT Project, report for the European Commission.