What is a Joint Information Center?
JIC, or Joint Information Center, is a collocated group of representatives from agencies and organizations involved in an event that are designated to handle public information needs. The JIC structure is designed to work equally well for large or small situations and can expand or contract to meet the needs of the incident.
When multiple public or private agencies and organizations come together to respond to an emergency or manage an event, efficient information flow is critical to effectively carrying out emergency public information responsibilities and meeting the expectations of various publics. A JIC is a centralized "communication hub" that serves to achieve that information flow.
Establishing a JIC, developing processes and procedures, and training staff on how to operate a JIC effectively allow response organizations to be more proactive in responding to the information needs of responders, the public, federal, state and local governments, foreign governments, and industry.
Different agencies (including state, local, and other entities) involved in a response can work in a cohesive manner, enabling them to "speak with one voice." By maintaining a centralized communication facility, resources can be better managed and duplication of effort is minimized. Finally, the use of a JIC allows for tracking and maintaining records and information more accurately-therefore, improving the ability to conduct post-incident assessments that can be used to improve crisis communication and general response activities during future incidents.