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Friday, December 8th, 2023

InSPIRE event bolsters disaster preparedness, resilience innovations

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Two agencies are espousing the benefits of the Innovation Summit for Preparedness and Resilience (InSPIRE), which is dedicated to fostering policy and technology innovation for preparedness and resilience.

The summit was hosted by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) and the National Alliance for Public Safety GIS (Geospatial Information Services) Foundation (NAPSG). The 2019 InSPIRE event held in Galveston, Texas, in November, brought together public safety practitioners and GIS professionals to build skills in developing and implementing GIS-based decision support tools, develop peer relationships and validate skills and capabilities through workshops and exercises.

The next InSPIRE event is scheduled to be held in Salt Lake City, Utah, April 6-8, 2021.

“InSPIRE is the evolution of a dialogue and collaboration that started in 2012 with the National Geospatial Preparedness Summit and has grown every year since,” David Alexander, DHS S&T senior Science Advisor, said. “Our shared goal is to raise awareness among the emergency response community about new situational awareness technologies, tools, and capabilities, and teach public safety and community stakeholders how to more effectively use them.”

Michael Chard, director of Emergency Management for the City of Boulder, Colo., and a member of the NAPSG Board, said he favored sessions in which everyone worked together.

“My favorite sessions were the ones where you had a lot of different folks from different disciplines—fire, EMS, emergency managers, and GIS professionals—working through problems and different phases of preparedness and recovery together to find solutions,” he said.