Advanced Decision Support for First Responder Command and Control (EN578-170003/27)

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Tender Notice


Publishing status


Publication date
Amendment date
Date closing
2019/02/07 14:00 Eastern Standard Time (EST)


Reference number
Solicitation number
Region of opportunity
Region of delivery
Notice type
Request for Proposal (RFP)
Trade agreement
  • None
Tendering procedure
Solely Canadian content
Procurement entity
Public Works and Government Services Canada
End user entity
Public Works and Government Services Canada

Contact Information

Contact name
Secrétariat de Solutions Innovatrices Canada / Innovative Solutions Canada Secretariat
Contact email
Contact address
10 Wellington
Gatineau  QC
K1A 0S5

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January 29, 2019

Attachment 5 has been added. The document contains a question and answer related to the Challenge.


January 25, 2019

Attachment 4 has been added. The document contains a question and answer related to the Challenge.


January 21, 2019

Attachment 3 has been added. The document contains questions and answers related to the Challenge.


January 15, 2019

1. The closing date for this challenge has been extended to February 7th, 2019 at 14:00 EST.

2. The presentations used during the webex can be requested at:


January 14, 2019

Thank you to everyone who joined or tried to join us for our Defence Research and Development Canada challenges information session in English.

We’re really sorry, we had some technical issues and we've postponed the session.

We’ve fixed the issue and we will be having another English session Wednesday, January 16 at 10:00am (EST). For details, see Attachment 2.


January 7, 2019

Are you interested in the latest Department of National Defence (DND) — Defence Research and Development Canada Centre for Security Science challenges?

Join us for a Webex session on January 10, 2019. English session at 10am. French session at 11am.

For details, see Attachment 1.

*Please note that interested suppliers are not obligated to attend in order to provide a proposal.

**Please note that only questions related to the program will be answered, questions about specific challenges should be submitted to


This Challenge Notice is issued under the Innovative Solutions Canada Program Call for Proposals 002 (EN578-170003/C).

Please refer to the Solicitation Documents which contain the process for submitting a proposal.

Steps to apply:

Step 1: read this challenge

Step 2: read the Call for Proposals

Step 3: propose your solution

Challenge title: Advanced Decision Support for First Responder Command and Control

Sponsoring Department: Department of National Defence (DND) Defence Research and Development Canada Centre for Security Science

Funding Mechanism: Contract

Maximum Contract Value:

Multiple contracts could result from this Challenge.

The maximum funding available for any Phase 1 Contract resulting from this Challenge is $200,000.00 CAD (plus tax) including shipping, travel and living expenses, as applicable, for up to 6 months.

The maximum funding available for any Phase 2 Contract resulting from this Challenge is $1,000,000.00 CAD (plus tax) including shipping, travel and living expenses, as applicable, for up to 2 years. Only eligible businesses that have completed Phase 1 could be considered for Phase 2.

This disclosure is made in good faith and does not commit Canada to contract for the total approximate funding.

Travel: For Phase 1, it is anticipated that two meetings may require the successful bidder(s) to travel to the location identified below:

Kick-off Meeting: Ottawa, Ontario

Final Review Meeting: Ottawa, Ontario.

Problem Statement Summary

The Department of National Defense (DND) is seeking a solution that will provide innovative, advanced real-time decision support solutions for civilian municipal, provincial, and federal (Royal Canadian Mounted Police and DND) first responder command personnel (police, fire and paramedic) during critical incidents such as: active shooters, rural-urban wildfires, infrastructure collapse, natural disasters and large public order events where multiple jurisdictions and agencies work together. While there are many components and sub-occupational groups involved in critical incidents, the emphasis for this challenge is on developing promising tools related to the cognitive-behavioral aspects of the command function. The solutions should improve the probability of making good decisions during high risk events, while reducing the cognitive load of incident command personnel.

Problem Statement

During critical incidents and events, first responder leadership makes time sensitive decisions which draw upon: disparate organizational information technology supports; myriad data, information and intelligence from human and digital sources; and an array of sensors from the environment. The tempo, volume and variety of decision inputs can overwhelm responder leadership when deciding to: use non-lethal / lethal force, detain citizens, reduce/enhance the mobility of people/goods/services in the community, and deploy scarce resources to mitigate the harmful effects of known and unknown threats and hazards to the community.

In many instances joint command structures need to be mobilized in keeping with doctrine such as the Incident Command System (ICS) and other local command, control and coordination (C3) structures. The problem space described draws upon insights from Canadian responders as captured in the Canadian Next Generation First Responder Preliminary Capability Assessment conducted on behalf of Defence Research and Development Canada. Similar responder capability gap work conducted by contributing members of the International Forum to Advance First Responder Innovation (an organization of international government leaders focused on enhancing and expanding the development of affordable, innovative technology for first responders worldwide - have also cast light on the need to improve the capability maturity level of unified command and control decision supports. The Department of National Defense (DND), through Defence Research and Development Centre for Security Science, is seeking a solution that will help first responders to ad support the cognitive-behavioral aspects of real-time incident command. The primary client groups are the sub-set of responders designated as incidents commanders and other key leadership positions in the civilian first responder space where the cognitive load during critical events is substantial.

Desired Outcomes and Considerations

The anticipated solutions should go beyond current offerings such as computer-aided-dispatch (CAD) integration applications, predictive analytics and tools that may not adequately support the cognitive-behavioral aspects of real-time incident command. Decision support tools and architectures should be innovative, and where appropriate, draw upon approaches and solutions such as: military concepts related to battlefield management, the ‘virtual battlefield space’ and other solutions developed for non-responders (eg: medicine, aviation, industry, and athletics). The solutions should improve the probability of making good decisions during high risk events, while reducing the cognitive load of incident command personnel. Solutions developed should support at least one of the critical incident use cases depicted in the Problem Statement Summary. It is suggested that applicant/bidder for improved real time C3 decision supports recognize relevant training and development considerations while framing proposals

Essential (Mandatory) Outcomes

Proposed solutions must:

  1. Position responder leadership to leverage some aspect of advanced natural language processing in a real time environment to interpret voice and/or text information and support decision-making;
  2. Position responder leadership to leverage the capture and interpretation of one or more ‘internet of things (IoT) sensors; and/or data and information from front line (non-command) responders and agency databases, and/or data and information from ‘smart cities’ and/or the community at large.
  3. Distill knowledge from previous similar events and approved doctrine into contextually relevant insight for first responder incident command while minimizing cognitive load on key decision makers.
  4. Improve the probability of making good decisions during high risk events, while reducing the cognitive load of incident command personnel.

Additional Outcomes

Proposed solutions should:

  1. Position responder leadership to leverage emerging; location based broadband enabled communications services.
  2. Leverage capabilities such as: artificial intelligence, machine learning, advanced analytics, augmented reality, and live, virtual and constructive synthetic environments.

Background and Context

The intended users of the solution are primarily civilian first responders – police officers, fire fighters, paramedics and other ‘operators’ - who are normally clients of the Canadian Safety and Security Program (CSSP) administered by Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC), in partnership with Public Safety Canada. The CSSP aims to strengthen Canada’s ability to anticipate, prevent/mitigate, prepare for, respond to, and recover from acts of terrorism, crime, natural disasters, and serious accidents through the convergence of Science and Technology (S&T) with policy, operations and intelligence.

The CSSP invests in, among other things, developing capabilities that help responders to conduct operations safely and effectively. Related CSSP project investments are intended to foster improvements to detection and decontamination technologies, forensic techniques, personal protective equipment, explosives countermeasures, and associated standards and processes. The Centre for Security Science undertakes to identify remaining S&T capability gaps where the CSSP and other federal investments may be positioned to help.

Despite advances in information and communications technology (ICT) supports and associated improvements in doctrine such as the National Incident Management System- developed by the US Federal Emergency Management Agency - first responder leadership report gaps in abilities to function effectively in unified command, control and coordination environments.

Recent analysis conducted for the US Department of Homeland Security - Project Responder 5 (PR5)- revealed that while responders believed while command, control and communications capabilities are improving, “breakdowns in establishing unified command often occur during large-scale incidents and can significantly hinder effective response operations”. This capability is one of the highest prioritized capability needs by the responders that participated in PR5. Canadian counterparts have articulated similar capability gaps during Canadian Safety and Security Program engagement activities with key leaders.

After action reports, public inquiries, legal proceedings, and other post-event processes often reveal opportunities for improving decision-making during subsequent events. Accordingly, individual and organizational challenges associated with skills perishability for incident commanders in the first responder services is of paramount importance. For instance, in some jurisdictions the number of structural fires has been reduced such that the new cohort of firefighters may be hard pressed to acquire the depth of experience of the previous cadre of responders. Similarly, police incident commanders in Canada responding to critical events such as armed barricaded persons take a ‘critical incident command course’ at the Canadian Police College. Training and development limitations at the national and local levels as well as the low frequency of critical events make it difficult for command personnel to stay as current as they would like to be.


All enquiries must be submitted in writing to no later than ten calendar days before the Challenge Notice closing date. Enquiries received after that time may not be answered.

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FileAmendment numberLanguageUnique Download Event (English page)Date added
attachment_1_-_english_webex_-_january_10.pdfNot availableEnglish- 2019-01-07
piece_jointe_1_-_webex_en_francais_-_le_10_janvier.pdfNot availableFrench- 2019-01-07
attachment_2_-_english_webex_-_january_16.pdfNot availableEnglish- 2019-01-14
piece_jointe_2_-_webex_en_anglais_-_le_16_janvier.pdfNot availableFrench- 2019-01-14
attachment_3_-_questions_and_answers_1_to_8_-_en578-17003-27.pdfNot availableEnglish- 2019-01-21
piece_jointe_3_-_questions_et_reponses_1_a_8_-_en578-17003-27.pdfNot availableFrench- 2019-01-21
attachment_4_-_question_and_answer_9_-_en578-17003-27.pdfNot availableEnglish- 2019-01-25
piece_jointe_4_-_question_et_reponse_9_-_en578-17003_27.pdfNot availableFrench- 2019-01-25
attachment_5_-_question_and_answer_10_-_en578-17003-27.pdfNot availableEnglish- 2019-01-29
piece_jointe_5_-_questions_et_reponse_10_-_en578-17003-27.pdfNot availableFrench- 2019-01-29