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News — 17 May, 2011

Continuing HOT Activation for the Ivory Coast

HOT activated in December of 2010 for the Ivory Coast following the Presidential Election crisis. During that time the OpenStreetMap information collected has been used as a datasource for Mapaction and included in the Common Operational Datasets of OCHA. We have managed good coverage over Abidjan thanks to Bing and SPOT imagery as well as performed an import of SAFER data over Yopougon, this information wouldn't be nearly as useful without the local knowledge that was contributed as well.

Despite political change occurring with the arrest of Gbagbo the humanitarian crisis continues. This is especially true in the western part of the country on the border with Liberia. According to UNHCR the number of refugees is still rising in that portion of the region. In order to assist those helping the refugees HOT seeks to improve the OpenStreetMap data along the border between the Ivory Coast and Liberia.

Responding organizations on the ground are especially looking for road information, place names and landuse. Additionally health infrastructure, review of place names and road conditions/names would be extremely valuable, but difficult to ascertain without local knowledge. OpenStreetMap has been helpful so far to responders, but more information is needed to be of use in the west.

If you are interested in helping we are organizing on the OpenStreetMap Wiki in the Ivory Coast area. Even if you just have a couple minutes to trace road information there is plenty of satellite imagery that still needs to be looked at. For those working in the Ivory Coast the OpenStreetMap data is available as a daily shapefile extract from GeoFabrik.