Saturday, February 13, 2021

Humanitarian Mapping

The Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) is a body which liaises between the OpenStreetMap organization and humanitarian organizations. The team is often actively involved in mapping post-disaster areas and in building better risk models for locations around the world. 

Accurate maps are essential after a disaster strikes, enabling relief agencies and governments to get resources and supplies to the right locations. In the last year HOT has been active during a number of global disasters, including after the Beirut Port explosion, after hurricane strikes in Turkey and Central America, and in response to the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic. In 2020 HOT also created a permanently-staffed global Disaster Services Team (DST).

The DST team has now released an interactive story map 2020 DST Lessons which provides an interesting overview and review of HOT's involvement in nine different post-disaster responses around the world.As you scroll through the map you can read how HOT responded to these different events on the ground. For example, it explains how after the devastating explosion at the Beirut Port HOT led projects to map areas outside of the city center in order to assist planning and service delivery by the Lebanese Red Cross.

The 2020 DST Lessons story map ends with a number of key takeaways. These include recommendations about how HOT can improve its disaster responses in the future.

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