Abstract for: Modeling a National Power Crisis in Support of A Crisis Lifecycle Model

Society is dependent upon electricity. In the last decade international scale outages have occurred with unfortunate regularity. While the impact of these outages has been limited to a few hours or days, they have been expensive and prompted fears that more severe failures could occur. While crises are perceived as events, their true origins come from the pre-crisis and post-crisis phases, where preparations and learning set the stage for the successful management of unusual events. A power crisis of a few weeks duration can set the policy agenda for many years. In this paper we describe a crisis model that captures the dynamic state of a power grid, the effects of failure on clients, government, and the public. The model was developed in concert with and validated by a panel of crisis managers. These factors combine to determine the post-crisis policies and socio-political factors that influence policy over much longer timeframes.