Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP7

PREDICT Report Summary

Project ID: 607697
Funded under: FP7-SECURITY
Country: France

Periodic Report Summary 2 - PREDICT (PREparing for the Domino effect in Crisis siTuations)

Project Context and Objectives:
The PREDICT project has started on April 1st 2014 and involves 11 partners. Three end-users are part of the project and are directly involved in the three test cases that will validate the PREDICT Suite.
PREDICT will deliver an innovative set of tools, methodologies and models to deal with cascading effects in multi-sectorial crisis situations. A generic approach was used to develop the tools setup to predict, prevent or mitigate cascading effects. The integrated PREDICT tool (iPDT) requires many tools working in the background with different functionalities. The iPDT is for the training of decision makers & information coordinators as well as provide prediction and decision support in the warm phase of a crisis. The integration will increase the awareness and understanding of cascading effects by crisis response organizations, enhance their preparedness and improve their capability to respond in case of cascading failures.
The new methods and tools developed within the PREDICT project may well reduce the negative impact of possible future cascading effects and may improve the planning of civil protection and crisis management operations. The PREDICT results will help lowering losses and damages in various fields, including economic or social safety and security. In order to bring this new quality into the cascading effects and crisis management domain, the project implements the six operational and technical objectives.
1. Gather and analyse available domain knowledge
2. Develop a common framework
3. Create models of cascading effects and interdependencies
4. Develop a suite of software tools
5. Validate the solution through running simulations
6. Disseminate project results
The PREDICT project started two years ago, the work-package on domain analysis and requirements is finished (WP2) all the other WP started in the first year. The results of WP2 are the baseline for understanding cascading effects and resilience in complex systems. In this state-of-art research in major areas related to cascading effects and systems’ resilience, we focused on threats identification, threats specification, critical infrastructures’ dependency and crisis management assessment.
On the metrics used to describe the “threats”, in view of enhancing systems’ resilience, natural threats and man-made threats were reviewed, excluding threats with adaptability-features. That is the case of: terrorism, sabotage and war. The principal finding is that major threats are assessed considering four notions: magnitude of the threat, intensity of its impact (on a well-defined set of systems), its likelihood and its active duration (mean active time).
On crisis management assessment, our research concluded that there is no international standard for crisis management. Subsequently, best practices play a crucial role. The private sector conducts short-term business continuity management and risk management. It appears that in many European countries, the public sector is better prepared for crisis situations than the private sector. Because of the interdependencies between CI sectors, crisis management at a national level requires a strong and effective public-private collaboration. Coordination and information exchange are crucial, and barriers (legal, administrative and cultural) need to be adapted.
The PREDICT methodology developed in the third work-package consists of the following steps:
1. Identify the threats;
2. Identify the CI in the region;
3. Identify the key CI elements;
4. Characterise the vulnerability of the key CI elements to the threat;
5. Assess the first order impact of the threat on the CI elements;
6. Describe the dependencies between the CI elements in the region;
• Describe the required input and output of all key CI elements;
• Distinguish between the different modes of operation;
• Include the temporal and spatial factors;
7. Assess the CI cascading effects.
In this project, end-user workshops have been organized to help defining the features of PREDICT tools. For the DSS part of the iPDT, we remind that the quality of the results depends directly on the quality of the inputs and their availability. Within a given crisis context, the time is the second important limitation. For the prediction part of the iPDT, the first essential requirement was to be able to effectively process the available data.
The backbone of the iPDT has been developed in WP4 in direct cooperation with WP5 and WP6. It is the design of the system architecture suitable for integration of the tools. The integration of the functionalities of the iPDT is ongoing. This approach follows the top-down Mission-Concepts-Realisation-Implementation (MCRI) scheme elaborated in the EU FP7 projects DIESIS, CIPRNet and CRISMA.
The main results after two years are illustrated in the deliverables submitted. On the analysis and requirements side, WP2 is over and results were reported in D2.1, D2.2 and D2.3. Methodologies for the identification and probability assessment of cascading effects, threat quantification and operation modelling have been reviewed and are available in D3.1, D3.2 and D3.3. A significant work on the preparation of the test cases has been performed by the consortium including many end-users. This work is detailed in the following deliverables: D7.1, D7.2, D7.3, D7.5, D8.1, D8.2 and D8.3. On the technical side, the state of the development of iPDT can be reviewed in D4.1, D4.2, D5.1, D5.4, D6.1 and D6.2.
The ultimate goal of PREDICT is to help avoiding or mitigating cascading effects in critical infrastructures (CIs) with an enhanced training function for the crisis management teams and possibly by offering DSS and prediction functions in the warm phase of a crisis. The required fundamental steps to achieve that goal include:
• Identify cascading effects: what are the cascading effects that may have an impact on crisis management itself and may affect response operations and mitigation actions?

• If possible, illustrate the evolution of the cascading effect and its impacts.

• If possible, propose a plan to the crisis managers to absorb or mitigate the cascading effects

To that end, the PREDICT project will deliver a prototype that support crisis management. The added values of the PREDICT integrated tool suite will be:
• Providing information on possible cascading effects of Critical Infrastructures in cases of emergencies and disasters. Effects include in particular, impacts on CM’s mitigation and response operations. The PREDICT tools will, for instance, generate foresight and predictions of incident evolution and predict effects that are relevant for crisis management and responders.

• Facilitating information sharing in (distributed) crisis management teams. One end-user has a computer-based information sharing system in place (VRZHZ, LCMS) that connects all crisis management teams. Other end-users do not have such computer-based information sharing systems. In WP6, the existing middleware system DPIF (Dynamic Process Integration Framework) and the DPIF-based information-sharing application DEIN will further evolve into an information-sharing platform for PREDICT.

Project Results:
The PREDICT project aims at delivering a comprehensive solution (PREDICT solution) for dealing with cascading effects in multi-sectorial crisis situations covering aspects of critical infrastructures. The PREDICT solution is composed of the following three pillars: methodologies, models and software tools, which – when used together – will increase the awareness and understanding of cascading effects in crisis situations. It will enhance the preparedness for such effects and improve the capability to respond of various levels (local, regional, national, international) decision makers in case of a crisis.
Therefore the second phase of the project (1 April 2015 – 31 March 2016) was devoted to:
• making progress in research in the fields covered by the project framework
Detailed objectives are listed below from the DoW:

OBJECTIVE 1: Gather and analyse available domain knowledge (e.g. historical data, crisis situation scenarios, policies, and procedures, expert knowledge) in order to create a solid, empirically proven background for the project and explore newly discovered information on cascading effects. Carrying out extensive and detailed analyses will enable investigating currently known and identifying new triggers (originating incidents, purpose acts or natural disasters) of cascading effects in crisis situations. Moreover, taking into consideration dependencies among various interconnected critical infrastructure sector elements and other not considered to be critical under existing policies, together with such triggers will help to determine probable cascade paths. Cascade paths (possible, different chain of events triggered by a single incident or act) will be used to study the influence of the crisis incidents, cascading through specific components of the dependent system (different sectors, products, services etc.). The gathered knowledge will also help identifying and measuring the strongest relationships, assessing threats, risks and magnitude of possible impact associated with the cascading effects and taking into account cross-border effect.

✓ The objective 1 was achieved within the WP2 (Domain Analysis & Requirements) through the establishment of the state of the art of the R&D activities in cascade effect & resilience global modelling, security metrics and technical specifications providing input to the WP3 (Incident Evolution Framework).

OBJECTIVE 2: Develop a common framework that will be an organised set of definitions, methodologies, scenarios, typologies, best practices etc., building a common base for each specific PREDICT solution end-user, but also for cooperation of various actors. The common framework for understanding cascading effect will gather and structure all of the factors affecting cascading effect and results of the carried analysis. This framework will be also used to define a set of quantitative and qualitative metrics and indicators for measuring the influence of cascading effect, taking into account econometric information about value of goods and services.

✓ The objective 2 was achieved within the WP2 (Domain Analysis & Requirements) through several tasks respectively the State-of-the-art of the R&D activities in Cascade Effect & Resilience Global Modelling, the Security metrics and the Technical specifications.

OBJECTIVE 3: Create conceptual and executable models of cascading effects and interdependencies being a structured and formal way of describing such effects. These models will include causal relations, multi-sectorial infrastructure elements and environment parameters and possible human influence (human factor) on the state of crisis situation. Moreover, they will identify the key points in the incident evolution where decisions are needed, and the need for specific dependency and cascading risk information from stakeholders. These models also need to identify the type of decisions required, including preventive and preparation decisions. Executable versions of such models will be used for cascading effect simulation purposes.

✓ The objective 3 was achieved within the WP3 Incident Evolution Framework through several tasks mainly the Identification and likelihood of cascading effect, the Threat quantification, and the Models for the organisation’s response and communication.

OBJECTIVE 4: Develop a suite of software tools for the simulation of cascading effects, decision support and creating collaborative expert networks and personnel training. These tools will help the PREDICT solution end-users to introduce new scenarios, simulate them and assess the potential decision-makers procedures in terms of their efficiency and effectiveness during a crisis. Continuous evaluation of the PREDICT solution outputs will be ensured by a dedicated expert network support tool. The developed suite of tools will be used in both preparedness and reaction phase of a crisis, allowing extensive virtual trainings and near real-time analysis of the situation. The developed tools will be suitable for assessing vulnerability of contingency plans, foreseeing consequences of complex crisis situations and determining the preconditions for failure of critical infrastructure.

✓ The objective 4 is currently handled within the WP4 (System Design & Iterative Integration), WP5 (Foresight and Prediction Tools), and WP6 (Decision Support Tools).

OBJECTIVE 5: Validate the solution through running simulations based on existing and developed cascading effects scenarios and using the developed models and tools. Such simulations will take into account infrastructure elements and relationships between them, environmental conditions, economic parameters, human behaviour and many other factors directly or indirectly affecting the course of the crisis situation. These simulations will be used to perform models behaviour test, which aim at comparing the simulation-generated states of crisis situation with the observed reference behaviour. This will ensure the validity of developed solutions and help to improve results of the project. Moreover, such simulation might be used to generate a set of different, possible cascading effect scenarios. Due to a close cooperation with potential end-users, the PREDICT solution is considered to be deployed for them, for testing purposes and possible operational use.

✓ The objective 5 is currently handled within the WP7 (Prototype and Testing Validation) and the WP8 (End-user network) through multiple test cases and workshop with internal and external end-users and active stakeholders.

OBJECTIVE 6: Disseminate project results and build appropriate liaisons among various project stakeholders starting from end-users involved in the project (at various levels), members of Advisory Board, other end-users’ representatives (five workshops will be organised with end-users external to the project), as well as general public. Moreover, the project results will be presented on forums and conferences related to crisis management and critical infrastructure topics. Additionally, the consortium will build connections between the PREDICT project and other, related initiatives, projects and programmes.

✓ The objective 6 started with WP9 (Dissemination and exploitation) and WP1 (Management & Coordination) from the beginning of the PREDICT project and will end at month 36.

Potential Impact:
The ultimate goal of PREDICT is to help avoiding or mitigating cascading effects in critical infrastructures (CIs) in cases of emergencies and crises. The required fundamental steps to achieve that goal include:
o Identify cascading effects: what is the risk that cascading CI effects during a “local” crisis have an impact on crisis management itself and affect response operations and mitigation actions?
o If possible, “show” the evolution of the cascading effect and its impacts to the crisis managers
o If possible, propose a plan to the crisis manager to avoid or mitigate the cascading effects

To that end, PREDICT will develop and deliver prototypes of tools that support crisis management in that task. The added values of the PREDICT tools and integrated tool suite will be:
o Providing information on possible cascading effects of Critical Infrastructures in cases of emergencies and disasters. Effects include in particular, impacts on CM’s mitigation and response operations. The PREDICT tools will, for instance, generate foresight and predictions of incident evolution and predict effects that are relevant for crisis management and responders. Early availability of such information will enable faster reaction and development of adaptation of contingency plans.
o Facilitating information sharing in (distributed) crisis management teams. One end user (VRZHZ) has a computer-based information sharing system in place (LCMS, reference) that connects all crisis management teams. Other end users do not have such computer-based information sharing systems. In WP6, the existing middleware system DPIF (Dynamic Process Integration Framework) and the DPIF-based information-sharing application DEIN will further evolve into an information-sharing platform for PREDICT end-user SYKE.

Typically, crisis management is performed in four phases: response, recovery, mitigation and preparedness. In principle, added value information on cascad-ing effects for CM decision support can be useful in all phases. The PREDICT consortium and its end users agreed on focusing primarily on the support of the response phase, and setting a second focus on training as a key element of the preparedness phase.

List of Websites:
www.predict-project.eu

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COMMISSARIAT A L ENERGIE ATOMIQUE ET AUX ENERGIES ALTERNATIVES
France

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Safety
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