Disaster Risk Reduction and Open Data Newsletter: November 2020 Edition

New International Earth Observation Group Tackles Disaster Risk Reduction
This past June, the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) established a new international working group for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) with over 90 members from around the world. This working group will promote good practice regarding the sharing of data and knowledge to improve DRR.

UN World Data Forum – Session recordings available
The UN World Data Forum was held from 19-21 October, and sessions recordings are now available. In particular, the CODATA session on Multi-Stakeholder Data Bridges may be of interest.

A new technique predicts how quakes would affect a city’s hospitals
A Stanford-led research team is helping disaster response officials figure out where injuries are likeliest to occur, so survivors can get to the hospitals best able to treat them.

Australia supporting Fiji with flood alleviation project
Australia is working in partnership with Fiji to mitigate the impact of floods on the major population centre of Nadi in a joint effort to save lives, reduce homelessness and protect the local economy. The Nadi Flood Alleviation Project will reduce the effects of these regular natural disasters on the commercial centre of Nadi town and on the Nadi flood plain.

Shaping the data governance landscape: A multi-sectoral approach to use, protection, and inclusive digital transformation
COVID-19 is rapidly shifting perceptions, priorities, and needs as they relate to digital and data policy, and this has accelerated the urgency of discussions around data governance. In this blog post, Tom Orrell, SDSN TReNDS’ member and Director of DataReady on behalf of Open Data Watch discusses the four recommendations that came out of a recent UN World Data Forum virtual session on this issue.

WMO: South Asia Flash Flood Guidance System Launched
The South Asia Flash Flood Guidance System (South Asia FFGS) has been officially launched, ushering in the prospect of improved early warnings for a major natural hazard in one of the world’s most populated regions.

Launch of INFORM Severity Index: a new tool to compare severity of crises
The INFORM Severity Index is an improved way to objectively measure and compare the severity of humanitarian crises and disasters globally. It can help us develop a shared understanding of crisis severity and ensure all those affected get the help they need.

New updated version of the DRMKC Risk Data Hub: a big step in the story of disaster loss data
The EC DRMKC Risk Data Hub proposes a facilitated access to knowledge, networks, tools, methods and disaster risk and loss data.

WHO: Pandemic fatigue – Reinvigorating the public to prevent COVID-19
Across the WHO European Region, Member States are reporting signs of pandemic fatigue in their populations – here defined as demotivation to follow recommended protective behaviours, emerging gradually over time and affected by a number of emotions, experiences and perceptions. Responding to a request from Member States for support in this field, this framework document provides key considerations for the planning and implementation of national and subnational strategies to maintain and reinvigorate public support to prevent COVID-19.

IDF: The Development Impact of Risk Analytics
The need for the Development Impact of Risk Analytics report became clear at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York in September 2019, which saw some fundamental shifts in risk policy. The authors of this report are united in the view that the ability to analyse risk should be shared more widely than it currently is, particularly for public sector decision-makers and other risk owners in climate-vulnerable countries. This can be achieved through cross-sector partnership, use of already available open-source technology and the application of open modelling principles.

Combining UAV Imagery, Volunteered Geographic Information, and Field Survey Data to Improve Characterization of Rural Water Points in Malawi
As the world is digitizing fast, the increase in Big and Small Data offers opportunities to enrich official statistics for reporting on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). However, survey data coming from an increased number of organizations (Small Data) and Big Data offer challenges in terms of data heterogeneity. This paper describes a methodology for combining various data sources to create a more comprehensive dataset on SDG 6.1.1. (proportion of population using safely managed drinking water services).

Communication structures and decision-making cues and criteria to support effective drought warning in Central Malawi
Early warning systems trigger early action and enable better disaster preparedness. People-centred dissemination and communication are pivotal for the effective uptake of early warnings. Current research predominantly focuses on sudden-onset hazards, such as floods, ignoring considerable differences with slow-onset hazards, such as droughts. In this paper, the essential factors contributing to effective drought dissemination and communication using the people-centred approach advocated in the WMOs Multi-Hazard Early Warning System Framework (MHEWS) are identified.

UNOPS – Infrastructure for small island developing States: The role of infrastructure in enabling sustainable, resilient and inclusive development in SIDS
In its latest report, UNOPS explores the role of sustainable, resilient and inclusive infrastructure in overcoming challenges and enabling development in Small Island Developing States (SIDS).

CODATA: Units of Measure for Humans and Machines: Making Units Clear for Machine Learning and Beyond
This document is a manifesto and call to action produced by the DRUM (Digital Representation of Units of Measure) Task Group as part of its efforts to mobilise representatives from International Scientific Unions and Associations to engage with this fundamentally important issue.

Nov 5 – UNDRR: World Tsunami Awareness Day 202- Ready for the Next Wave!
On 5 November 2020, UNDRR will invite country representatives at the Ambassadorial level, based in Geneva to a 60-minute High-Level Panel to share with a virtual audience how they are implementing disaster risk reduction plans and are preparing to face the next tsunami.

Nov 2-6: Fifth World Landslide Forum 2020
The ICL and the Global Promotion Committee of the International Programme on Landslides (GPC/IPL) will organize the Fifth World Landslide Forum (WLF5) on 2-6 November 2020 in Kyoto Japan. This conference is the mid-term conference of ISDR-ICL Sendai Partnerships 2015-2025. A new long-term global platform for understanding and reducing landslide disaster risk (Kyoto 2020 Commitment) to 2025, 2030 and beyond will be launched at WLF5. The ICL is now calling for speakers with full papers or abstracts and PPTs.

16-19 Nov: WMO Data Conference (Virtual Conference)
The WMO Data Conference aims to develop a common understanding among entities from all sectors of society of the roles, requirements and arrangements for the international exchange of observations and other data for monitoring and prediction of the Earth System environment, including weather, climate and water.

Nov 20 – CODATA Webinar – Better Software, Better Data Handling
Software practices, skills and training have become an essential part of the toolkit of any researcher who deals with data. In this webinar, we cover how better software skills help you become better at data handling and what support is out there to improve your practice. The webinar is focused on an ECR audience.

2-6 November – GEO WEEK 2020
GEO Week 2020 will showcase the efforts to implement the Canberra Declaration by highlighting initiatives from GEO Members, Participating Organizations and Associates in a series of live discussions and interactive content. The GEO Highlights Report will be launched as an interactive website and PDF showcasing the impact of the GEO Work Programme with highlights from 2020.

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