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Mapping Volcanoes in Ecuador

HOT Project



A mapping of communities, risk areas and evacuation routes in volcanic areas.

Ecuador is a country with more than forty volcanoes in its territory, several of them active and many with cities and communities around them.

It is therefore necessary to strengthen policies and strategies for Risk Management, expanding the limited geospatial data available.

The Collaborative Mapping project of communities surrounding volcanoes in Ecuador emerged at the initiative of AEON Art Gallery, the Fundación Openlab Ecuador and Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team’s (HOT) Latin American and the Caribbean Open Mapping Hub, who were joined by GeoMap ESPE, aiming that the results be part of the art-science exhibition “Pure Land”, framed in turn in the international geophysics meeting “Latin American and Caribbean Sismological Commission IV Assembly (LACSC) 2022” to be held in the city of Quito.

The mapping process is designed to be a co-creation and didactic experience, bringing together university students, expert mappers and multidisciplinary professionals to collaborate on the improvement of a public use map based on OpenStreetMap that will be an input for risk management against possible eruptions.


Below is a summary of the scheduled activities:

Cayambe Notathon

“Notes” are notes that mappers leave on the map when they have doubts about some characteristic, usually accompanied by a photo so that whoever reviews can have more evaluation elements.

A notathon is made to resolve these notes and incidentally to have a much updated map. In this case we had the collaboration of Maptime Bogotá who organized the Cayambe Notathon last August 6, resolving a total of 64 notes.


First Mapatón

This remote modality mapathon had the objective of facilitating the field work that will be carried out later, outlining and improving basic aspects of the map.

The activity is still open and available to mappers from all over the world. Those who are interested can sign up for the project here.


Cayambe Field Trip

It was decided to carry out a field mapping trip to the surroundings of the Cayambe volcano due to its proximity to the city of Quito and the characteristics of the surrounding communities, favorable to our activity.

This outing took place on September 8, including:

  • Mapillary-based mapping of at least three communities surrounding the Cayambe volcano, with the participation of some 25 mappers from the Youthmappers community and others from the city of Quito.

  • Taking photos with a drone, with the participation of students from the Simon Rodriguez Institute of drone piloting. These photos will serve for new orthophotos.

  • Work with women in the area under the leadership of #EverywhereSheMaps. Sites of interest to them will be mapped: productive, cultural, touristic places, etc


Volcanoes of Ecuador Mapathon

This face-to-face mapathon took place on September 10 with two main objectives:

  • Entering the data collected during the field trip to Cayambe.

  • Remote mapping of locations adjacent to other volcanoes in Ecuador.

For this, about 30 university students interested in collaborative mapping, and other mappers with more experience were invited. International speakers were also invited, to present mapping tools and talk about risk management in relation to volcanoes and the importance of mapping experience on the subject.


At the end of the process, the results will be exhibited in an exhibition room, where the interventions to the OpenStreetMap map will be presented, along with photographs of the teams during the various activities and texts explaining the objective of their intervention on the map together with the local community. Once the exhibition is over, all its materials will be donated to the municipality of Cayambe for its exhibition in cultural centers in the area.



This series of activities had the invaluable support of: the Geophysical Institute of Ecuador, the National Polytechnic School, GADIP Cayambe, GeoMap ESPE, Youthmappers, Everywhere she Maps, Mapillary, the Simón Rodriguez Latin American Institute.



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