A lucky February at the GEM Foundation, which has been awarded two projects: 1) ‘Modelling Exposure Through Earth Observation Routines: EO-based Exposure, Nepal and Tanzania’ granted by the UK Space Agency; and 2) ‘Improving Post-Disaster Damage Data-Collection’ granted by The World Bank. UK Space Agency METEOR ProjectThe METEOR project not only involves GEM, but also the British Geological Survey (BGS), ImageCat, National Society for Earthquake Technology (NSET), The Disaster Management Department (DMD - Prime Minister's Office) of Tanzania, the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) and Oxford Policy Management Limited (OPM).
All of these institutions will join forces to develop and deliver more accurate levels of the exposure of populations and the built environment to natural hazards in developing countries. The first test countries will be Nepal and Tanzania, because of their differing exposure and hazard types, but one of the objectives of this project is to reach all 48 Least Developed ODA (Official Development Assistance) countries. Importantly, METEOR addresses Priority 1 of the Sendai Framework for DRR: “Understanding disaster risk:Disaster risk management should be based on an understanding of disaster risk in all its dimensions of vulnerability, capacity, exposure of persons and assets, hazard characteristics and the environment. Such knowledge can be used for risk assessment, prevention, mitigation, preparedness and response.”
GEM and our partners will collaborate with local and national partners in order to ensure delivery of sustainable impact through capacity-building and knowledge-sharing throughout the project. Finally, METEOR will use Earth Observation (EO) data to develop and deliver products, the impacts of which will result in economic and social benefits. In fact, the outcome of this project will be to provide risk managers and disaster management authorities in developing countries with detailed, accurate and consistent data, and consequently to be better prepared to assess risk and to plan and prepare for, respond to and recover from natural hazard events.
The World Bank-Improving Post-Disaster Damage Data Collection to Inform Decision Making ProjectOur second project comes as a response to an assignment launched by The World Bank entitled “Improving Post-Disaster Damage Data Collection to Inform Decision Making”. In order to be able to address this request, GEM, JBA Consulting, CIMA Foundation and Geocom Ltd. have formed a consortium. This combination of partners offers expertise in the four relevant natural hazards (earthquakes, landslides, floods, and cyclones), as well as decades of experience in the collection, aggregation and reporting of disaster damage data.
The result of this project will be the design of a system that can support governments in damage assessment, data aggregation and reporting. The demonstrating country will be Armenia and the project will be divided into two phases: I - Assessing solutions and review of the situation in Armenia, and II - Conceptual design damage data collection system, with an adaptation to the Armenian context.