Different types of uncertainty in nuclear emergency management

S. French*, S. Haywood, D. H. Oughton, C. Turcanu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


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
Pages (from-to)S175-S180
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgement. The work described in this paper was conducted within the CONFIDENCE project, which was part of the CONCERT project. This project has received funding from the Euratom research and training programme 2014– 2018 under grant agreement No 662287. Disclaimer (Art. 29.5 GA). This publication reflects only the author’s view. Responsibility for the information and views expressed therein lies entirely with the authors. The European Commission is not responsible or any use that may be made of the information it contains.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences 2020.


  • Decision support
  • Radiological emergency
  • Uncertainties


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