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Risk Communication: A Campaign for Coastal New Jersey

Risk can be perceived very differently by populations that experience similar kinds of events based on culture, economic practices, education, and length of flooding events. Due to this, it is not enough to relay to people that they are at risk; it is necessary to help them understand, through compelling and clear messaging, what can be done so they feel empowered to take action.

The Coastal Management Program (CMP) was awarded funds to partner with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts (Arts Council) and the Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve (JCNERR) to develop a replicable risk communications campaign that will address the need of the CMP and local decision-makers to have tools to better communicate the risks and impacts of coastal hazards.

The CMP wishes to adopt new methods of communication to have a more wide-spread and effective approach to communicating risk. The risk communication campaign will involve several components, each of which aim to improve the methods and materials used by the CMP and local-decision makers when communicating about the risk of coastal hazards. However, each component is meant to work together to result in a comprehensive strategy.

Risk Communication Materials: Materials such as infographics, images, and short videos will be developed for the CMP and local-decision makers to use through handouts, electronic communications, and social media.

Social Media Strategy: Using the risk communication material as a base, a social media strategy will be developed to engage audiences on the impacts of coastal hazards and risk reduction actions.

Community-Based Art Grant Program: Selected community-based organizations (CBO) will be paired with artists that specialize in environmental topics to create art installations in specific locations within New Jersey's coastal areas. Artists will develop installations that engage communities and will culminate in a community event. The social media strategy will be used to get the word out about each installation and the opportunities for communities to get involved.

Coastal Hazards Risk Communication Training: To help increase the understanding of the best ways to communicate risk, the CMP will utilize NOAA’s “Building Risk Communication Skills” training to provide local decision-makers with communication tools, insights, and teach new skills on ways of creating the desired behavioral changes The CBOs and artists will be invited to participate in this training.

What's New

To ensure everyone’s health and safety during the on-going health emergency from COVID-19, the Community-Based Art Grant Program has been postponed, including the Notice of Funds Availability. DEP will not be making funding available or accepting applications, as it relates to this Art Grant Program, at this time. Our intent is to re-announce this funding in Fall 2020 with a revised timeline for the Art Grant Program.

Thank you so much for your understanding and patience.

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Last Updated: October 21, 2020