1st Edition

Crisis Communication Case Studies and Lessons Learned from International Disasters

By Kjell Brataas Copyright 2018
    224 Pages 35 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Crisis Communication is an in-depth examination of recent tragedies and natural disasters that have occurred around the globe.

    The book covers three types of incidents: natural catastrophes, accidents and terror attacks. It focuses on the communication aspect of each incident and provides accounts from people handling the event. Each chapter offers a detailed description of the event and supplementary facts and illustrations from a variety of sources.

    With a focus on critical communication elements and lessons learned, Brataas offers valuable advice - based on personal experience with natural disasters, accidents and terror attacks - on some of the most effective ways to prepare for and deal with a crisis. Topics range from interview situations and social media to victim support and active shooter events.

    This book will be invaluable to those working in public relations and communications, as well as to those working with human resources and general management.


    [Peter Power]

    1. Disasters In The Transportation Sector

    2. Natural disasters

    3. Terror

    4. Introduction and Models for Crisis Communication

    5. Working with The Media

    6. Social media in crisis communication

    7. Internal Communication– Don’t Forget Your Employees

    8. Top Level Communication and Management Priorities

    9. High-Flying Crisis Communication (The Special Case of Airlines)

    10. Family Support and Victim Assistance

    11. Preparing for The Worst

    12. Psychological Reactions

    13. Additional Information and Further Reading


    Kjell Brataas has been on the front lines of crisis communication during some of Norway’s most devastating crises. He held central positions after the tsunami in 2004 and following the terrorist attacks in Oslo and on Utoya on July 22, 2011. Brataas has practical experience from private companies and government ministries. He has presented at crisis communication conferences around the world, including London, Toronto, Istanbul and Denver, and he has lectured on crisis communication at the university level.

    'Kjell Brataas presents his readers with an easy-to-follow guide culled from his own experience and from observing other crisis communications professionals. He stresses the critical importance of keeping up with the ever-evolving media landscape while pointing out that important lessons are to be learned not just from public relations missteps but from those who get it right. Examples of both are included in this well-written book.'Christine Negroni, author of The Crash Detectives: Investigating the World's Most Mysterious Air Disasters

    ‘Previously, crisis management instruction was only accessible to a very small and select group of top executives, such as advisors to Prime Ministers, senior UN officials, and airline leaders. This book now makes best practices available for all. Excellent case studies and emergency management concepts can now be made ubiquitous and introduced to any organization willing to prepare its teams for the unexpected.’Jānis Vanags, Senior Manager and IATA Instructor on Emergency Management

    'Kjell Brataas does an amazing job of capturing the true meaning of crisis communication through sharing his experiences during the incidents in Norway in 2011. Most interestingly, he discusses something not many emergency managers think about: supporting the family after an event. It was truly remarkable to learn the lengths taken to give the next of kin an experience in memorializing their loved ones. A great read for anyone wanting an in-depth description of how the correct crisis communication procedures can change the outcome of an emergency incident response.'Lauren Miller, M.S., Emergency Management Specialist

    'Kjell Brataas has brought crisis communication theory and practice up to date with the rigorous, insightful analysis and advice contained in this book. I recommend that organizations wishing to evaluate their crisis communication capabilities refer to this very accessible work.'Russ Stewart, Head of Health, Safety, Security & Travel : European Bank for Reconstruction & Development

    'Communication is such an intrinsic and universal aspect of crisis and emergency management and is of such significance to everyone involved in disasters (planners, responders, media professionals, victims and community members) that a book on this subject is likely to be of interest and practical help to a very wide audience.'Anne Eyre, Australian Journal of Emergency Management