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Switzerland's Federal Rapid Reflection Force

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Type of organisation: Swiss Federal Chancellery

Country: Switzerland

Level of government: Central government

Type of practice: Process

Type of hazard or threat:

Risk management theme: Crisis management & preparedness

In Switzerland, the Federal crisis early detection and rapid reflection Force collects information from key stakeholders to report and alert the President and Cabinet about a potential threat. It provides support in times of crisis, and develops quarterly situation reports. The Federal crisis early detection and rapid reflection Force was put in place in response to the Government and Administration Organisation Act of 28/09/2012. The Force includes: • A crisis counsellor, providing expertise input to the Swiss President or to any other Federal crisis cell mandated by the Cabinet • A rapid reflection force, developing sense-making for complex crises, taking into account cascading effects. • A Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), advising on technical and scientific aspects of a crisis

Why the good practice was developed

The Federal crisis early detection and rapid reflection Force was established as a result of the Government and Administration Organisation Act adopted on 28/09/2012. This Act attributes new tasks in federal crisis management. In particular, a new presidential service of +/- 10 staff in charge of giving advice and support to the Federal Council concerning the timely detection and management of crises. This staff is also responsible, along with others, for the early detection of crises and crisis management advice and support. The Force does not act as a crisis cell, but rather integrates diverse backgrounds and approaches to foster creativity and out-of-the-box thinking about about crises.


  • Analyse global and national trends having a strategic crisis potential for Switzerland and inform decision-makers in their strategic decisions

  • Develop a sense-making approach to better identify key challenges and actors, and elaborate relevant strategic options

  • Improve operational coordination and the execution of urgent measures in times of crisescrises

  • Ensure the coordination of communication among stakeholders



Service quality


User satisfaction

Results not available yet


  • The Federal crisis early detection and rapid reflection Force is operational.

  • A pilot phase of three years has been set up for three years, with a participation in crisis exercises, to refine the Force’s methodology.

Lessons Learned

  • TDB