DAY 2 – Tuesday 3 May – 14:00-15:30
Swiss Tech | Room 1A | Level Garden
Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team, United States
Cristiano Giovando is a geographer and advocate of open data and open source geospatial software. At the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team, he coordinates technical project and imagery acquisition during disaster response activations. In 2015 Cristiano lead the creation of OpenAerialMap, a platform for sharing and finding openly licensed imagery. He was previously a scientific officer at the European Commission, developing an open source system for wildfire information and mapping called EFFIS.
Projects such as OpenStreetMap have demonstrated how free and open geographic data is vital to many aspects of disaster response and preparedness efforts. Governments and communities are realizing the importance of open data not only in support of risk modelling and humanitarian response, but also to foster economic development. The increasing availability of very high resolution satellite, aircraft and drone open imagery, is enabling the creation of even more comprehensive, up-to-date and detailed maps. This session explores how such open data policies and technologies are being applied to different aspects of the humanitarian response cycle including:
- preparedness mapping
- support of disaster response teams
- training of local communities
- risk modelling
Presenters will share lessons learned and discuss how crowdsource-mapping initiatives such as OpenStreetMap have been integrated into preparedness and humanitarian response projects. The session will focus specifically on:
- humanitarian response and preparedness scenarios benefiting from data openness
- how open source software provides more sustainable tools to humanitarian mapping
- data models, standards and interoperable services in support of open geodata exchange
- innovative technology and best practices for sharing open geographic data
- successes of community mapping initiatives in the Global South
Emily Eros, American Red Cross, United States, Putting 20 Million People ‘On the Map’: Evolving Methods and Tech Tools [PDF Full Paper]
Accurate maps play a critical role in understanding human communities, particularly in post-disaster settings and for populations at risk. While open geospatial data has become more common over the past decade, additional work is necessary to map vulnerable communities before a disaster or crisis occurs. As part of their Missing Maps project, the American Red Cross and its partner organizations are actively working to map 20 million of the world’s vulnerable people by 2017, creating open map data for anyone to access, use, and update. This paper (1) describes the project’s remote and field mapping methods, (2) outlines the technical tools developed for the project, (3) highlights how humanitarian and development organizations can adapt these tools and methods to other initiatives, and (4) explores current challenges and research questions surrounding mapping initiatives focused on the Global South. In doing so, this paper provides an overview of current trends in crowdsourced mapping and emerging data collection methods, with the aim to share tools and experiences with others in the humanitarian community.
Deogratias Evarist Minja, Community Member in Tandale ward,Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, Ramani Huria and Community Mapping – Towards Free and Open Map Data and Imagery for Dar es Salaam [PDF Full Paper]
Historically Dar es Salaam suffers from Risk and Disaster of floods that wipe out roads, take out houses, and result in many deaths. The damage these floods cause could be prevented with adequate planning, but much of the city is made up of unplanned and informal settlements. Community mapping is being pioneered by communities, the City of Dar es Salaam and Tanzania’s Commission of Science and Technology, supported by the Red Cross, GFDRR and the World Bank. By helping communities to map residential areas, roads, streams, floodplains, and other relevant features, data is now available to support disaster resilience activities and response to areas that were previously unmapped. The will also bring awareness of the need for flood prevention and risk reduction to the local level, while teaching participants valuable computer and mapping skills that they can put to use elsewhere. With collaboration of different stakeholders focused on community-based mapping project in Dar es Salaam, by training teams of university students and community members to use OpenStreetMap with the up-to-date aerial data captured by small UAVs to create sophisticated and highly-accurate maps of the most flood prone wards of the Dar es Salaam, towards building risk and disaster management, preparedness and resilience within the city.
René Saameli, International Committee of the Red Cross, Switzerland, Healthsites.io: The Global Healthsites Mapping Project [PDF Full Paper]
Open geographic data and crowdsourcing mapping activities have made geodata more accessible for humanitarian actors and the opportunities of use greater. However, large volumes of data spread over multiple datasets combined with poor information management rules make efficient use by humanitarian actors difficult. Locating health facilities in disaster areas is a good example of this challenge. Many databases on health sites are available. Some, such as Open Street Map (OSM), are easily accessible but still largely incomplete and unreliable, others are much better but are not easily shared outside of the organizations which have gathered them, or are regional in their coverage. All these datasets complement each other in terms of geographical coverage and in terms of the information they contain, however they are almost never readily available in a consolidated, freely accessible way. This can seriously hamper initial relief efforts in emergencies. To address these issues healthsites.io, the International Committee of the Red-Cross (ICRC) and the International Hospital Federation (IHF) have joined their competences and networks in order to create a free, curated, global source of healthcare location data. This open development initiative called The Global Healthsites Mapping Project aims to create an online map of every health facility in the world and make the details of each location easily accessible. In order to achieve this goal, the project has developed a specific master data management methodology which the healthsites.io team are in the process of implementing. This paper will present in details the technical, but also institutional, challenges that need to be overcome to collect, aggregate, consolidate, quality-assure and distribute more than 150’000 reliable locations of health sites throughout the world.
Nate Smith, Development Seed, United States, OpenAerialMap: Empowering Disaster Response and Preparedness Communities with Aerial Imagery [PDF Full Paper]
Small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) and nanosatellites are revolutionizing earth observation and democratizing remote sensing. Increasing amounts of aerial imagery are now being acquired both from these novel systems and from traditional satellite and aircraft platforms. Earth observation and remote sensing research and activities have the potential to gain from this increase in amount and quality of data. But the use of this data is still limited because of the difficulty of access. OpenAerialMap (OAM) seeks to solve this problem by providing a simple open way to search and retrieve open imagery. OAM is both a set of tools and community built on open source and open standards. OAM launched in the summer of 2015 in support of humanitarian response and development mapping projects through the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT). OAM is growing the community of contributors; currently there are thousands of images freely available for use.