Different types of uncertainty in nuclear emergency management

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Institutes & Expert groups

  • University of Warwick/Coventry
  • PHE - Public Health England
  • NMBU - Norwegian University of Life Sciences

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The objective of the CONFIDENCE project has been to identify, assess and communicate the uncertainties that arise in managing and recovering from a nuclear accident. To do that, it is important to be clear on what uncertainty means, how it arises and how we might analyse it. In fact, there are many forms of uncertainty, some of which we can assess with current tools, but some of which are more nebulous and difficult to deal with. Nonetheless, all need to be communicated to the emergency managers. Starting with a review of different categories of uncertainties, and using examples from the CONFIDENCE project, this paper discusses how the various uncertainties are manifested in nuclear emergency management. It concludes with a simple framework for categorising and analysing them. The overall intention is that such a framework could contribute to a broader discussion on identifying and handling uncertainties with nuclear emergency management actors.


Original languageEnglish
Article number2020029
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 20 May 2020


  • Radiological emergency, Uncertainties, Decision support, CONFIDENCE

ID: 6813362