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Case Study: Collaborative Online Technologies in the Response to Typhoon Haiyan

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What role did social media and crisis mapping play in the response to Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), which hit the Philippines in November 2013? This presentation looks at this question from the perspective of international humanitarian organizations.

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Case Study: Collaborative Online Technologies in the Response to Typhoon Haiyan

  1. 1. Collaborative online technologies in disaster response (Typhoon Haiyan, Philippines 2013) 12.06.2014 1Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com Photo: Jason A. Howie on Flickr Timo Lüge, ComDev Malmö
  2. 2. Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda)  Category 5 – Super Typhoon  10 minutes sustained wind speed: 230 km/h  1 minute sustained wind speed: 315 km/h  Affected communities on many islands over a very large area (logistical challenges) 12.06.2014 2Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  3. 3. 12.06.2014 3Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  4. 4. Drone view - Tacloban 12.06.2014 4Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  5. 5.  What kind of damage did you see?  What do you think killed most people? Many people did not evacuate because radio stations warned of “storm floods” which people were not familiar with.
  6. 6. What can social media do? 12.06.2014 6Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  7. 7. Social media in emergencies 1) Share information 2) Collect information 3) Divide big tasks (crowdsourcing) 4) Coordinate help by the affected population for the affected population
  8. 8. 12.06.2014 8Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  9. 9. 12.06.2014 9Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com Photo: C Maya on Flickr 1. Sharing information
  10. 10. Sharing information (intl. orgs)
  11. 11. Sharing information (national)  Disaster Management Authorities  Government Departments  Government Ministers (Secretaries)  Media  National NGOs / Red Cross  …
  12. 12. 12.06.2014 12Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com Photo: F Bisson on Flickr 2. Collecting information
  13. 13. The information paradox In a disaster you have at the same time too much and too little information. 12.06.2014 13Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  14. 14. The information paradox You have a lot of data but not enough actionable information. 12.06.2014 14Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  15. 15. 12.06.2014 15Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  16. 16. Better situational awareness 12.06.2014 16Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com What we want:
  17. 17. How much is relevant?  About 8 per cent of tweets sent during a disaster contain situational information  After the earthquake/tsunami in Japan, more than 100,000 tweets were posted every five minutes  After the 2011 New Zealand earthquake, 7,500 tweets were posted per hour using the hashtag #nzeq  Haiyan: 250,000 tweets collected in 48 hours → We need tools that help us identify relevant information and remove duplicates 12.06.2014 17Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  18. 18. 3. Dividing big tasks 12.06.2014 18Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  19. 19. Standby Taskforce  An automated system harvested 250,000 tweets  Filtered for relevancy/uniqueness: 55,000  120 volunteers responded to the call  The “Clicker” system cut the number down to 18,000 12.06.2014 19Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  20. 20. 12.06.2014 Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 20
  21. 21. Standby Taskforce  An automated system harvested 250,000 tweets  Filtered for relevancy/uniqueness: 55,000  120 volunteers responded to the call  The “Clicker” system cut the number down to 18,000  At the top of their activities, volunteers tagged 150 tweets/minute 12.06.2014 21Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  22. 22. 22 2013 – Immediate Needs Map
  23. 23. Standby Taskforce Map  1,831 tweets (around 0.3% of the Tweets harvested) were put on the map  Useful in the first day(s) before information could be gathered and verified on the ground or via satellite images.  Helped to create situational awareness outside hotspots like Tacloban 12.06.2014 23Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  24. 24. 12.06.2014 24Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 2012 – Needs Map
  25. 25.  Social media not accessible in all locations or to all members of the affected population, particularly the most vulnerable Mobile phones work as a relay  Biased information better than no information  Traditional information gathering methods are also biased Information bias
  26. 26. 12.06.2014 Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 26 Maps
  27. 27. 12.06.2014 Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 27 Mapping with OpenStreetMap  OpenStreetMap is the “Wikipedia of maps”, i.e. editable by everyone  OSM is open source and works offline on Android devices  HOT (Humanitarian OSM Team) can be tasked to coordinate crisis mapping volunteers www.openstreetmap.org learnosm.org/en/
  28. 28. 12.06.2014 Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 28 Tacloban – OpenStreetMap
  29. 29. 12.06.2014 Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 29
  30. 30. 12.06.2014 Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com 30 Report: http://reliefweb.int/report/philippines/groundtruthing-openstreet-map-building-damage-assessment-haiyan-typhoon
  31. 31. 4) Coordinate help for and by the affected population 12.06.2014 31Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  32. 32. How the affected population is using social media Many people affected by disasters are using social media either themselves or indirectly through relatives or local media to:  Share “safe and well“ messages  Find information  Coordinate resources to fill needs 12.06.2014 32Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  33. 33. #RescuePH  #RescuePH and #ReliefPH are “offical” hashtags for assistance  Requests are entered into maps and GoogleDoc spreadsheets  Information available to authorities and the general public who can respond to requests 12.06.2014 33Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com
  34. 34. Social Media in Disaster Response Source of information Channel to mobilise people Tool to coordinate people
  35. 35. 35
  36. 36. Recommended reading Humanitarianism in the Network Age www.unocha.org/hina World Disaster Report: Focus on technology and the future of humanitarian action worlddisastersreport.org Guidance for Collaboration with Formal Humanitarian Organizations digitalhumanitarians.com/collaboratio n-with-orgs
  37. 37. Additional sources used Simon Kemp: Social Digital Mobile in APAC 2014 http://de.slideshare.net/wearesocialsg/social-digital-mobile-in-apac Dale Kunce: Inside the Eye of a Hot Activation: http://americanredcross.github.io/presentations/SOTMUS_2014/ Robert Bannick: Groundtruthing OSM Building Map Assessment: http://reliefweb.int/report/philippines/groundtruthing-openstreet-map- building-damage-assessment-haiyan-typhoon
  38. 38. Thank you! Timo Lüge Social Media for Good www.sm4good.com timo.luege@gmail.com Twitter: @timolue 12.06.2014 38Social Media for Good – www.sm4good.com

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