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News — 25 May, 2012

OpenStreetMap at the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative Disaster Simulation

Last year I spent a bitterly cold day in a forest in Massachusetts, witnessing how people who have never experienced a disaster somehow prepare for taking part in a response. Instructive, frightening, and sometimes funny. Jennifer Chan has been bringing information tools into the process, with an Ushahidi instance last year. This year, there was the opportunity to bring OSM into the mix, and Christian Spanring, Kate Chapman, and myself helped to bring some maps together for the sim.

Last year I spent a bitterly cold day in a forest in Massachusetts, witnessing how people who have never experienced a disaster somehow prepare for taking part in a response. Instructive, frightening, and sometimes funny. Jennifer Chan has been bringing information tools into the process, with an Ushahidi instance last year. This year, there was the opportunity to bring OSM into the mix, and Christian Spanring, Kate Chapman, and myself helped to bring some maps together for the sim.

Some words of thanks from the Sim:

Dear HOT/OSM, We can't thank you enough for your collaboration with us. We have created with you and CGA an updated map of the SIM site and are in the process of printing double sided laminated maps for our 120 students this weekend. We will also have large maps with your help at the mock UN cluster meetings. The updated OSM map will be the map for the Ushahid platform with the SBTF. This is a very large step forward for visualization for us and we could not have accomplished this without you and the CGA. Thank you and we'll be in touch from the field with how it rolls out! Jennifer

Thank you guys! Was a great opportunity to both test OSM and raise awareness of how it fits into disaster response.