VPC is proud to announce the award of the 2021 CDRI Fellowship to VPC President, Ms. Deepa Srinivasan and VPC Hazard Mitigation Planner, Mr. Andrew Estrain.

Making tomorrow’s infrastructure sustainable and resilient requires investing in high calibre research and innovation today. Increasingly complex infrastructure systems of the 21st century require capabilities that can combine knowledge from multiple disciplines, harnessing the promise of emerging technologies, and bringing together insights from the academic and local levels. The CDRI Fellowship Programme is designed to develop a global pool of practitioners who represent such capabilities. “We are thrilled but humbled to be among such imminent players in the field and stoked to have made our footprint on the global stage”, says Deepa Srinivasan, President of VPC.

VPC was awarded one of 21 fellowships from 12 countries worldwide. Our research will offer an integrated approach to developing plans, policies, and doctrines as well as improving inter-agency collaboration, by using machine learning. Our proposed innovative concept to help solve these problems will focus on using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) for the integrated planning of hazard mitigation and risk reduction principles into existing jurisdictional planning frameworks and plans. Automating the plan integration processes will successfully and effectively enable community plans to build on one another.

“An AI model is only as good as the data that it is fed. VPC will work closely with Disaster Management Authority at the national, state and district levels in India, as well as in other countries to identify the best available data to be used in building the AI model. Our AI plan integration process will strive to: streamline planning processes; ensure consistencies between various levels of government; and alleviate the burden of governmental departments who spend excessive time on conducting plan integration manually. Government departments – the primary stakeholders - will benefit greatly from using this automated process”, says Ms. Srinivasan.

VPC President, Deepa Srinivasan, is proud to successfully complete MIT’s 2-week Professional Education Course on Crisis Management and Business Resiliency, held in late January 2021. “I was in great company of business managers, crisis professionals, planners, administrators - a truly diverse group of 58 students from 5 continents, 11 countries, and 49 companies!” says Ms. Deepa Srinivasan.

The lectures covered a wide variety of topics that included: Business Continuity Laws; Standards and Metrics; Case Studies on Managing Global Crisis; Supply Chain Management Before, During, and After a Crisis; An Airline’s Response to the Pandemic, and Lessons Learned. “It doesn’t get much better to hear from SMEs with MIT, government, media, and industry professionals, and whose presentation materials were varied, relevant, and comprehensive” said Ms. Srinivasan.

The course culminated in a live virtual simulation that involved a hazmat leak scenario, wherein class members were split into 6 teams: The company’s Crisis Management Team, IT/Disaster Recovery, Corporate Communications, Crisis Response Team, Government Responders and Officials, and the News and Social Media. Attendees were able to move between virtual rooms to get a feel for how each of these groups tackles the crisis situation. “I would recommend this course to anyone looking to be on the cutting edge in continuity/crisis management” she said.

To learn more about the course, visit the MIT website: https://professional.mit.edu/course-catalog/crisis-management-business-resiliency

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