This research examines the ways in which social media is used to organize and manage volunteers during a flood. Flooding is currently one of the top risks highlighted within the UK National Risk Register and ways to help those affected need to be explored further.
Social media is a valuable tool in disaster management as it enables information to be passed quickly and effectively to its target audience. Through semi‐structured interviews with those who have experienced a flood disaster or worked during a flood recovery, we examined the potential role of social media, as well as traditional media, before, during, and in response to a flood. Interviews showed that the use of social media during a flood saved time and reached a larger audience than traditional media outlets (i.e., email, telephone). Social media was reported to be particularly useful for facilitating recruitment and management of volunteers, and for gathering equipment required during the recovery phase of a flood disaster.
Our findings demonstrate that social media can play a crucial role in facilitating effective organization and management of volunteers during flood disasters.