Quantitative decision-making rules for the next generation of smarter evacuations

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


  • John Fry
  • Tobias Galla
  • Jane Binner

External organisations

  • Sheffield University
  • University of Manchester


In this chapter we discuss the mathematical modelling of the next generation of smarter evacuations. Alongside a burgeoning literature on resilience we formulate a quantitative decision-making framework through which Social Media can be used to deliver more efficient evacuations. Our approach is flexible and improves upon existing models by allowing incoming information to be incorporated sequentially. Further, our model is the first of its kind to consider the effects of information quality (including abuse) and over-crowding upon network systems. In a high-quality information regime the potential benefits of Social Media increase as the size of the potential delays increases. Simulation results show that by not using updated information, as proposed in this study, final evacuation times are increased by 20% and in some cases can be more than doubled. In a low-quality regime Social Media provides noisy information and other alternatives—including random allocation strategies and peer-to-peer communication—may be more effective.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCity Evacuations: An Interdisciplinary Approach
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas