Full 2018 Programme

Purpose of CrisisConf2018
CrisisConf2018 is a Conference for crisis management professionals. It is deliberately aimed at aviation and hotels as those industries share many of the same risks associated with an international and temporary clientele. Other industries with a similar customer profile, support industries, service providers and researchers will also benefit from the programme.

The Purpose of the Conference is to help crisis staff at all levels understand the many human, organisational and logistical challenges of crisis so that we can determine the most effective contingency arrangements. We do not need crisis plans based on theory; we need to assess the hard lessons learned by other organisations and use those experiences to make our own businesses properly resilient.

Visit to Heathrow Airport's Control Centre & Crisis Management Suite

A limited number of places available to all registered delegates at no extra charge. An invaluable opportunity to attend a tour of Heathrow Airport Operations Centre and Crisis Management Suite and discuss resilience planning at one of the world’s busiest airports. Insight includes information on:

Management of a large airport on a 24/7 basis
Activation processes to ensure a suitable incident response
Command and Control – roles and responsibilities


Registered delegates should contact
rebecca@crisisconf2018.com to reserve
their appointment.

Crisis Management Planning Clinic

Available at no charge to all registered delegates. The ‘clinic’ is by appointment only and availability 
is very limited. All appointments will be on Monday 
15 October (PM) and Thursday 18 October (AM). 
The appointments will be held at the Grange City Hotel. Crisis Conference are offering one-on-one discrete meetings with a crisis management expert.

The discussion topics are chosen by the delegate. From their significant experience, our experts can help with all aspects of crisis management planning including:

• Strategic challenges and 
engagement of leadership
• Budgeting for efficient and 
effective programmes
• Section and management of 
service providers
• Volunteer programmes
• Departmental crisis plans


Registered delegates should contact
jerry@crisisconf2018.com to reserve
their appointment.

Crisis Communications Expert Support

Available at no charge to registered delegates.

CrisisConf2018 is offering one-on-one meetings with a professional crisis communications expert.

The discussion topics are chosen by the delegate. From their significant international experience, our experts can provide help and advice on all aspects of crisis communications including:

  • Working with external PR companies
  • Effective use of social media in a crisis
  • Selection and preparation of spokespersons
  • Crisis Communications planning
  • Value of emergency-only websites

The meetings are by appointment only and availability is very limited.  All appointments will be Monday 15 October (PM) and Thursday 18 October (AM) at the Grange City Hotel.

Registered delegates should contact jerry@crisisconf2018.com to reserve an appointment.

Available Free of Charge to Delegates

DAY ONE – Tuesday 16 October 2018
A warm welcome to London to all delegates, speakers, sponsors and exhibitors.

CrisisConf2018, the specialist conference for crisis management professionals.


Deborah Higgins
Head of UK Government Cabinet Office – Emergency Planning College

The Risk to Reputation – the Ferocity of Judgement


Jo-ann Robertson
Partner and CEO – Ketchum London

Following an incident, organisations face almost immediate judgement. Long before the cause of the emergency is known and before blame is attributed, companies will be judged on their response.  Irrespective of the reality, the perception of a poorly managed incident can have disastrous consequences.

Jo-ann Robertson will examine the extent to which the judgement of customers, investors and employees can have a direct and long-term affect on recovery and future business.

Hurricane Harvey and its Affect on Aviation and Hotels in Texas, USA


Frank Ciaccio
Director of Public Safety & Emergency Management – Houston Airport System

CrisisConf2018 uses first-hand experience of crisis events.  By examining the response, delegates can understand the success or otherwise of pre-crisis planning and training.

In August 2017, large parts of Texas were devastated by flood water, resulting in one of the costliest tropical cyclones in history.  At a US and State level, this was a disaster.  At local-business level this was a crisis that needed determined management.

Frank Ciaccio was on the front line.  He witnessed the closure of all airports in the Houston ‘System’ and the unprecedented pressure on area hotels, those that were above water.  Like thousands of other Houstonians, Frank was challenged both by the enormity of the response and recovery task and the personal risk to health and property.

In this practical assessment, Frank will offer the lessons learned by business responders from both the aviation and hotel sectors that can be taken forward by planners. Topics include:

  • To what extent were crisis plans useful?
  • Were pre-incident training and exercises realistic?

How successful was inter-agency and inter-business cooperation and communication?

Crises that Affect your Customers:
The Unique Challenges Facing Global e-commerce Booking Companies


Marlon Guimaraes
Global Corporate Security Manager – Booking.com

CrisisConf2018 represents views on crises from all sectors of the travel industry.  As we look to the future of our response strategies, we must learn and share more broadly than we ever have before.

As one of the Global leaders in travel e-commerce, Bookings.com will expose some of its own crisis challenges and the management strategies it has developed to safeguard corporate customers and the general public.

Marlon and Inge will discuss their company organisation for crisis management and its response process.  Citing recent incidents, they will expand on the success of collaborative programmes with hotels and airlines and the extent of e-commerce responsibility for the care of the traveling public.

Delegates will have a unique opportunity to look at the online companies and how, in an emergency, they move from virtual to physical support.

10:50 – Refreshment Break

Strategic Resilience Programmes


Catia Guimaraes
Director, Global Resilience – Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG)

Emergency response planning and business continuity are often seen as two separate areas of work.  The current trend encourages ‘systemic resilience’ and the contribution made by every employee to protect their businesses.

In her fascinating outlook, Catia will discuss the relative roles of classic emergency response and operational crisis management within the overall strategic resilience architecture of the corporation.

Delegates can assess the way that these programmes work at property level (stations for aviation), regional and corporate level.

Should we Plan for Humanitarian Support?


Barbara Webster
Director, Emergency Response & Business Continuity – Spirit Airlines

Andrew Baldwin
Director, Guest Support – Carnival UK (P&O Cruises & Cunard)

Nick Orwin
Emergency Planning Manager – London Luton Airport & Vice Chair of the UK Aviation Emergency Planning Working Group

Typically our emergency programmes are built to protect our clients and the Company.  But is that sufficient?  Recent history has shown the extent to which private businesses have responded to humanitarian crises.  The hurricanes in the Caribbean and Grenfell Tower in 2017, Nice in 2016 are all recent examples of the extent of our support.

Three companies that have provided such support will discuss the extent that hotels, aviation and the Cruise industry combine their resources, systems and experience to assist during civil humanitarian crises.  Barbara, Andrew and Nick will consider the ethical and business challenges and also informally-poll delegates to determine the extent that emergency support outside of the Company is planned for and resourced.

Response to a Major Emergency:
Germanwings Flight 4U9525


Patricia Jansen
Head of Emergency Response Planning – Eurowings

Patricia Jansen was a member of the Germanwings Crisis Management Team at the airline HQ in Cologne, Germany.  She served in this role for six weeks following the tragic events of 24 March 2015.

In this session, Patricia will discuss the challenges that the airline faced in the first hours, weeks and months after the loss of the flight.  She will consider the management of resources, information, communications and logistics as she paints a picture of the reality of responding to a major international emergency. Patricia will also share her personal reflections on how the crisis affected her and her colleagues.

Through first-hand and contemporary presentations, delegates can determine the capacity of their own companies to manage a major emergency and the appropriateness of current planning and training.

13:20 – Lunch (Sponsored by Risk & Resilience)

14:30 – Following lunch we will conduct a series of Special Interest Workshops.

The Special Interest Workshops are for delegates to select topics that are most relevant and useful for the development of policy, strategy, plans and training. Delegates can select two Special Interest Workshops from the four offered each day (eight workshops offered in total).  The workshops are interactive learning and sharing opportunities.

Standards in International Crisis Management



Emily Hough
Editor in Chief – Crisis Response Journal

Ian Marshall
Chair of UKAEPG

Paul Moxness
Global Expert in Hotel Security and Crisis Management

How can we achieve consistency in international crisis response?  Is consistency even relevant?

Panellists from international aviation and hotel groups will debate with delegates the need for realistic and achievable standards for crisis management. Who sets these standards and have they been tested for cultural and national variations? The often-misused term, ‘What does good look like’, will be used as the starting point.

Guided by a Director of the Crisis Response Journal, the panellists will reflect on their personal experiences of operating with and without standards and their targets for the future.

Note to delegates:

This session is expected to provide material that will be forwarded to ICAO to inform its current work-stream, “Ensuring Accident Victims and Their Families are Treated the Same the World Over”.

Crisis Communications


John Bailey
Managing Consultant – Global Communications Consulting

John Bailey, a leading expert in his field will present a master-class on communicating in a crisis.  From his own first-hand experience of real crises, John will help delegates to appreciate the full scope of this corporate necessity that is often delivered at local level by frontline responders.

The workshop will include a discussion on the receivers of communication and the methods of delivery.  This is not a workshop just for formal spokespersons, it is for any employee who, in the aftermath of crisis, is exposed to external and internal audiences and required to inform while protecting the company’s reputation.  John will use multi-media case studies and a short exercise to give practical advice on being prepared and being confident.

Cyber Attack – a New Theme for Crisis Management?


Michele Hanson
Chief Information Security Officer – Gatwick Airport

The European Aviation Safety Agency stated in 2016 that aviation systems were targeted for cyber-attacks 1000 times per month

According to PwC’s Hospitality Outlook 2015-2019, the security of guest information is an enterprise-wide business risk for the hotel industry. 

Notable international cyber-attacks in aviation have targeted Delta Airlines and Boryspil Airport as well as hotel brands including IHG and Hyatt.

Given the high profile of cyber risk and the international effort to combat the perpetrators, to what extent are traditional emergency planners and crisis management teams able to respond should an attack occur?

Michele will discuss with workshop delegates the strategies for planning and training to reduce the effects of a cyber-attack.  She will also debate who in the company has the responsibility for such preparations.  Of course it is the IT department for risk management but what about response management?  Should this be the responsibility of the Crisis Management Team or does it rest solely with IT or even Security?

Terror-Prepared – Soft Target Response


Angela Hills
Senior Destinations Manager, Health, Safety, Crisis & Operations – ABTA

Several tragic events in recent years have shown that hotels and airports are among the top ‘soft-targets’ for those who wish to challenge our freedoms.  No country is exempt from this risk.

As businesses and as potential places of refuge, we have a responsibility to support users of buildings during and after a terror attack.  But these are also places of work for our staff.

In this workshop, Angela will discuss with delegates how we prepare staff to respond and communicate quickly and appropriately during terror incidents.  ABTA has been working with the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) and has prepared a Train-the-Trainer package suitable for staff and managers working in a hotel, airport or other soft target environment.  Angela will show how you can introduce security preparation training workshops for your own staff using the Actions Counter Terrorism (ACT) methodology and tools.

15:30 – Reorganisation and Refreshments

Repeat of Workshops 1-4

17:00 – End of Day One Programme

17:45 – Technical Stage and Cocktail Reception

The formal part of the day is over. CrisisConf2018 now provides exceptional access to some of the leading systems-solutions companies for crisis management support. Join F24, Conducttr, Noggin and CrisisVR live in the four Technical Stage rooms as they demonstrate their products and answer your questions.

The informality of the Technical Stage is matched with the Conference Cocktail ReceptionMeet with old and new friends and enjoy some hospitality as you network and visit the Technical Stage.

DAY TWO – Wednesday 17 October 2018
Summary of Day One and the Programme for Day Two


Beverley Griffiths
Director of Resilience – Cabinet Office Emergency Planning College

The Evolving Landscape


Chloe Demrovsky
President and CEO – DRI International (Disaster Recovery Institute)

Where are we today, what has changed and what future crises and threats should we be planning and preparing for?

CrisisConf2018 welcomes a true Thought Leader. Chloe Demrovsky will deliver a fascinating insight into the very nature of emergency preparedness.  To be prepared, we need to learn the lessons from the past but also plan for the crises that have yet to happen.

Post-Crisis Investigation:
The Legal Process


Nicole Cambré
VP Legal – Radisson Hotel Group

On 20 November 2015, gunmen entered the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako, Mali and held guests and staff as hostages.  The attack claimed 20 lives of citizens from 7 different countries.  Countless other guests and staff were rescued from the attack but not from the memory.

Reflecting on the Bamako incident, Nicole will explain how the legal process contributes to the post-incident investigation.  She will discuss the international considerations and the necessary internal and external interactions.

Nicole will also paint a picture for delegates of the impact of the legal work.  Its effect on business and its effect on staff.  She will explain the time commitment of staff to the legal processes and how invasive that may feel.  Her aim is to show how the legal work following an incident is a fundamental process of crisis management.

Malaysia Airlines MH17 – View from the Station


Wilfred Kreuger
Former Station Manager, Schiphol, Amsterdam Airport, Malaysia Airlines

17 July 2014.  Malaysia Airlines suffered its second major loss in a few months.  Staff who are still responding to the missing MH370, are now confronted by a tragedy of a quite different nature but with the same ultimate effects.  MH17 was lost over Ukraine to a missile attack.

The flight operated from Amsterdam.  Wilfred was the Station Manager for Malaysia Airlines in Schiphol Airport and on the front-line of the airline’s response.  He explains how the response effort was coordinated, how it was resourced and the challenges for leadership and communications.

Wilfred will also explain the extraordinary effort that was made to support the well-being of response staff so that they could, in turn, provide the best possible support to family members.

10:50 – Refreshment Break and Exhibition

11:20 – Special Interest Workshops

The Special Interest Workshops are for delegates to select topics that are most relevant and useful for the development of policy, strategy, plans and training. Delegates can select two Special Interest Workshops from the four offered each day (eight workshops offered in total). The workshops are interactive learning and sharing opportunities

Co-operative Partnerships for Effective Crisis Management


Maureen Bradley
Resilience Manager – Centrica

Brussels Airport terror attack of March 2016 was a stark illustration of the inevitable need for agencies to work together in an emergency.  The airport, its vendors, operating airlines, ground agencies, emergency services, local hotels and businesses were all at surge capacity to cope with the enormity of the response.

Maureen Bradley will debate with delegates the practicalities of cooperative partnerships in the preparatory stages of crisis management.  For too long, commercial companies and public authorities have operated largely exclusively of one another in an emergency.  How are attitudes changing and is this universal?  What steps can we take in our own environments to effect true cooperation in planning, training, communication and the sharing of data.

Effective Exercises and Drills


Tiggy Thiagarajah
Head of Ops Process & Resilience – Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited

Continuing with the practical advice session started in the Training and Crisis Communications workshops on Day One, Tiggy will work with delegates to share his own experience of managing a programme of crisis management exercises.

Training imparts knowledge, skills and procedures at a personal level; it gives us the tools that we need to do our jobs.  Exercises are not personal.  They are a rehearsal of plans and teams for events that we do not want to occur, things that keep us awake at night.  Emergency plans without exercises to test them are just rhetoric and cannot be trusted.

In this workshop, delegates will explore the different types of exercise available to planners and the relative advantages, cost and organisation of each type.  Tiggy will explain how his own company has combined Business as Usual with exercises for efficiency.  He will also give his tips for adding realism to exercises and how to make sure that the whole team is engaged and committed.

Training of Response Staff


Jerry Allen
Conference Director & Managing Director – Return on Development

With reducing numbers of available core staff and the pressure of time, emergency managers often struggle to meet the trained-requirement for response personnel.

This workshop will investigate solutions and options available in 2018 and the future for adult training.

As an experienced international trainer in crisis management, Jerry will discuss with delegates the relative value of traditional and modern training options.  In a fully interactive session, he will demonstrate how a small amount of ingenuity and preparation can result in an efficient and economic training programme.  The workshop topics will include:

  • Budgeting for training
  • Determining the ‘trained-requirement’
  • Consultants v In-house training
  • Collaborative training with other companies
  • Training 3rd Party response organisations

Technology support

Care for Victims and Their Families


Abigail Pollard
Managing Director – Blake Emergency Services

Crisis management is really the management of the consequences of the crisis, not the incident itself.  This is never more poignant than when we consider the human consequences of loss, sadness, confusion and anger.

This workshop has as its special focus the care for victims and their families; ‘care’ in the widest possible sense of the word.  This is a key experiential skill to which many delegates will not have personally been exposed. The workshop will show the A – Z of post-incident care and how the delivery of that care varies significantly from incident to incident given differing cultures, nationalities, expectations and circumstances.

Using their considerable incident experience (including the response to Air Algérie Flight 5017), Abigail and her team from Blake will immerse the delegates in the victim and family assistance challenges.  The Blake staff will answer your questions not just on the emotional aspects but also the logistics of setting up family information centres and FAC; the necessity of communicating with the families and what to say; the care for employees who are indirectly affected; and the care for responders.

Their aim is that every delegate will go home and review their training and exercise programmes to ensure that they match reality and not academic theory.

Note to delegates:

This session is expected to provide material that will be forwarded to ICAO to inform its current work-stream, “Ensuring Accident Victims and Their Families are Treated the Same the World Over”.

12:20 – Lunch and Exhibition

Repeat of Workshops 5-8
Development of Leadership for Crisis

The Application of Lessons Learned from the Mass Shooting in Utøya, Norway


Robert McAlister
Director – Glenbarr Ltd

Nils Reinholdt
Head of Crises Management Unit RVTS East

Mark Bradley
Associate Director – Clarity Stress & Trauma

“……(this session) is like watching 3 experienced people discussing openly and frankly the good and bad about crisis incidents, the effect on people and what we can do going forward to be better at dealing with these issues.” Robert McAlister

As Robert expressed above, this expert discussion has ‘people’ as its underlying theme.  In a crisis scenario, people are all potential leaders. How they are mobilised, directed, react and make decisions is the responsibility of more traditional organisational leaders and their people skills.

The expert speakers will discuss the reality that leadership and ownership is required at every level – not purely a blue light or senior level responsibility. This needs to be the focus of crisis leadership in the future, where we no longer have the luxury of time, complex dynamic situations or unlimited resources.  Every aspect of this session is focussed on leadership but not always as traditionally seen.

15:15 – Refreshments and Exhibition

The Role of Ground Handling Companies in an Emergency Response


Gill Sparrow
Manager Contingency Response Planning – Emirates

Andy Lord
Executive Vice President – Menzies Aviation

Ray Fitzgerald
Manager Airfield Operations – London Heathrow Airport

Delegates will have their opportunity to join a debate on one of the most sensitive topics of CrisisConf2018.

For many years, airlines have toiled with the conflicting demands of maintaining sufficient emergency resources while meeting strict budget efficiencies.  More and more core staff have been replaced on the front-line with specialist agents. But what crisis management expectations are placed on the ground handling companies and are those expectations realistic?

IATA has provided guidance and draft wording for Agreements but what does that all mean at the time of an accident response?

Uniquely, this panel includes the airline planner (Gill) and a leading provider of ground handling support (Andy) who was once himself ‘on the other side of the table’ as an executive with BA.  The airport, always at the centre of the response and a useful mediator, is represented by Ray.

Crisis Communications:
On the Edge of Tomorrow


Patrick Meschenmoser
Owner – Mesh & Moser Situation Management

Being prepared to respond is the goal of every emergency planner.  But ‘prepared’ is relative and subjective or driven by assessments and analysis that are outdated.  The way we communicate in a crisis is a fundamental part of being prepared but it is the part that changes most rapidly.  Planners must keep pace with the accelerating change in communications if they are to present robust crisis response options.

In this session, Patrick will take you on a journey starting with the golden crisis communication rules developed in the past. He will challenge you to consider if these rules still apply in the brave new media world of the present.  Using his multi-industry crisis communications experience, Patrick will let you glimpse into the communications environment and its challenges that we will face in the future.

As CrisisConf2018 comes to a close, given the insight of Patrick and our other expert speakers, we can truly ask ourselves, ‘Are we prepared for tomorrow?’

17:05 – Conference Chair: Closing of the Conference

Pre and Post-Conference Events

CrisisConf2018 is the primary assembly for crisis management and resilience professionals from aviation, hotels and associated industries. The opportunity to network and achieve additional benefit from the event is significant. The Conference will offer a range of professional and enrichment visits and activities on both 15 and 18 October. Details of these events will be posted very soon. To take full advantage of these opportunities, when planning your travel, we recommend arrival before midday on 15 October and departure after midday on 18 October.
Further details of each topic and workshop will be available soon. Information on expert speakers and facilitators will be announced once invitations have been confirmed.

If necessary, the Programme Committee may adjust the timing or content of the sessions.

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