FOSS4G-Asia 2023 Seoul

Using Open-Source Geospatial Tools for Building Climate Resilience in Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in Asia-Pacific and Africa
11-29, 16:20–16:40 (Asia/Seoul), Online Talks

The growing availability of free geospatial data and satellite imagery has unlocked numerous opportunities for applying geospatial information in climate resilience, disaster risk reduction, and environmental monitoring. The United Nations Satellite Centre (UNOSAT), which is part of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), utilises these satellite imagery and geospatial data to enhance the capabilities of Member States in evidence-based decision-making for peace, security, and resilience building. UNOSAT, under its partnership with the Norwegian Development Agency (NORAD), is currently strengthening the capacities of eight partner countries: Bangladesh, Bhutan, Fiji, Lao PDR, Nigeria, Solomon Islands, Uganda, and Vanuatu by providing geospatial solutions for improved decision-making in the fields of Disaster Risk, Climate Resilience, Environmental Preservation, and Food Security. The different open-source tools, algorithms, and web solutions play key roles in the implementation of the capacity development interventions of the project. In this project, UNOSAT has been delivering technical trainings in the use of open-source software such as QGIS, OpenDroneMap, and CloudCompare for processing different types of spatial data, including drone imagery and LiDAR datasets. In the application of knowledge gained through training, UNOSAT frequently receives technical support requests from various key stakeholders in each country. To address these requests, the project team prioritises the use of open-source tools and methodologies. This approach aims not only to deliver products but also to facilitate knowledge transfer to ensure the sustainability of technical capacities. In addition, web solutions have been developed using GeoNode, Terria, and WebODM to further support the need for services using geospatial technology. Co-creation is at the core of developing these solutions so that partner countries will have the ability to autonomously maintain and operate these solutions beyond the project lifetime. By using open-source software, this project allowed UNOSAT to help countries find ways to work together more effectively despite their limited resources. This approach of prioritising open-source solutions for capacity development has been contributing to transformational change in the partner countries by improving climate resilience through effective and efficient disaster preparedness and response and supporting evidence-based decision-making for a more systematic climate change adaptation response by the government and the local communities.

Sheryl Rose Reyes is a Remote Sensing Expert at the United Nations Satellite Centre (UNOSAT).

Khaled Mashfiq is a Disaster Risk Reduction professional with over fifteen years of experience, passionate about applying technology solutions for smarter decision making. He is currently working as the Liaison Officer for UN Satellite Centre (UNOSAT) of UNITAR in the Asia Pacific office in Bangkok. Some of his notable fields of expertise are geographic information system, remote sensing, disaster risk modelling, climate change monitoring, big-data analytics, structural engineering.