(Source: David Lozada)
How can social media and new technologies help? how can individuals and groups use such technologies to help out during disasters? What can government institutions and disaster responders benefit from these?
At PH+Socialgoods Summit 2013, Andrew McGlinchey, Google’s product manager in South East Asia, said that the biggest challenge is getting the data from the agencies that have it. He put emphasis on “finding all sources and information that people need ahead of time” and not during disasters.
He, then, pointed out the company’s crisis response activities, created with the help of crowdsourcing data: Google's crisis maps (used to keep track of casualties and damage) and the Person Finder (a way to track people in the aftermath of a disaster).
“Think already now on how we can share this info so that in the event of a crisis, Google and others can help organize this information”.
(Source: Ben Schiller) SabrinaMcCormick, an associate professor at George Washington University, about assessing impact of catastrophic event:
It can be months before the true experts finally get into an area affected by disasters like oil spills, but there are thousands of concerned citizens interested in documenting what’s happened. The problem is: We never use their data.
The data collected through crowd-sourcing is generally more time-sensitive.
Citizens naturally recognize patterns, often in a local, immediate way
Citizen science can improve the understanding of responders to the wider problem, including those neighborhoods they may not know about.