Analyze your risks and create your crisis plan | #mediadev | DW | 04.04.2022
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Media Resilience Scanner

Analyze your risks and create your crisis plan

A comprehensive online crisis preparation, management, and recovery tool for news organizations.

DW Akademie's Media Resilience Scanner: a step-by-step guide for media outlets to comprehensive risk assessment

DW Akademie's Media Resilience Scanner: a step-by-step guide for media outlets to comprehensive risk assessment

Explore the Media Resilience Scanner | DW Akademie

The first quarter of 2022 delivered a stunning panoply of crises to the world's news organizations. The Russian invasion of Ukraine reduced cities there to rubble, devastating the economy and sending millions of refugees into the rest of Europe. At home, the Russian government cracked down on opposition and criminalized free speech, causing independent news organizations to shut down and some Russian journalists to flee.

The conflict unleashed digital warfare, with government-sponsored and independent hackers attacking digital infrastructure in both countries and spreading digital misinformation and disinformation around the world. On the economic front, rising fuel and food costs fed global inflation, with experts predicting that by year's end, even distant countries will face economic hardship, and possibly food shortages as the global ripple effects of the invasion multiply. 

In the meantime, Asian and South Pacific countries that avoided severe disease outbreaks during the first two years of the Coronavirus pandemic were locking down as Covid-19 swamped the region – creating impacts similar to those that have pummeled news organizations elsewhere since 2020.

Australien: Schwere Überschwemmungen

Floods in the city of Lismore, Eastern Australia

In Australia, climate crisis-fueled floods erased entire communities that had survived the climate crisis-fueled drought and wildfires of 2020. In North America, CNN abruptly lost its President, another senior executive, and one of its highest-profile anchors following investigations into various alleged ethical and corporate policy violations. A $125 million lawsuit against the international network was just part of the fallout.

This litany of crises illustrates clearly the range of threats that can affect news organizations' viability. While the crises of 2022 may be unusual in their magnitude and density, if they teach news media professionals anything, perhaps it should be to ask: "What might happen to us?"

And after that: "What do we do about it?"

The Media Resilience Scanner 

DW Akademie's Media Resilience Scanner is one answer to those questions. The comprehensive online crisis preparation, management, and recovery tool for news organizations guides media professionals step by step through the process of realistically evaluating and planning for the risks they face, managing crises as they occur, and assessing and addressing the residual risks to news media viability that follow major disruptions. These include external threats – authoritarian crackdowns, conflict, natural disasters, digital attacks – as well as internal crises.

Ukraine - Bilderchronik des Krieges in der Ukraine

War in Ukraine: A journalist interviewing the Mayor of Chernihiv in front of a destroyed shopping mall

The tool allows media managers and others in charge of crisis preparation and continuity to identify the key measures needed to withstand possible economic and operational shocks to their organizations. By answering crucial questions about financial management, news operations, human resources, crisis communication and digital security, users can build their own individual crisis plan, including allocating responsibilities and creating deadlines for their staff. At the end, the Scanner generates a customized crisis preparation and management plan as a downloadable PDF.

The Media Resilience Scanner draws upon lessons learned by over 30 media organizations all over the world – including in Myanmar, Iraq, the Philippines, El Salvador, Lebanon, the United States and Kenya – that have successfully steered a way through internal and external crises, conflicts, and natural disasters. The Scanner can also be used as a crisis and disaster training tool for news organization managers, staff and journalists.

DW Akademie offers free use of the tool to all interested news organizations. No data entered by users into the Scanner is digitally saved or stored except to the PDF downloaded to the user's computer, ensuring privacy and data protection. 

Explore the Media Resilience Scanner | DW Akademie

For more information on risk assessment and crisis planning for news organizations:Discussion paper: "Weathering crisis. Ensuring Media Viability, continuity and resilience" 

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