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Emergency networks formed by the first responders seem to be a very relevant area for the application of the concept of autonomic cooperative networking. This holds true especially because of the ad hoc and/or mesh nature of such network setups where one may observe very dynamic topology changes. And so this paper discusses the aspects of autonomic cooperative communications in emergency networks by investigating the preferred network configuration strategies enhanced with the cooperative behaviours expressed by autonomic nodes with the use of relaying. In particular, both the aspects autonomic networked systems and cooperative communications are investigated jointly to give an outline of the advances attainable with the use of the currently existing technologies as opposed to what would be advised conceptually.