Do you see what I see? Building = yes and other defaults
10-18, 09:10–09:50 (Pacific/Auckland), Plenary

Building and progressing a mapping community in the Pacific, what is the role of unseen bias?

"Drawing inspiration from Edafe Onerhime's insightful talk, we aim to expand the conversation and deepen our understanding of how our assumptions shape the OSM ecosystem, the mapping communities in the Pacific and examples of current practices.

The term ""building=yes and other defaults"" pertains to the data we add as features in OSM as well as the various contributors who map these features and/or share the same characteristics. Our communities, projects, and guidelines often reflect a limited set of characteristics, therefore introducing limitations and biases into the data. This is particularly important across a region of more than 30,000 islands, exhibiting variances in socio-economic, political and cultural statuses and differing practices of ‘community’.

This talk will explore these default aspects and common assumptions using the the OSM ecosystem, as a primary example. It is not meant to assign blame or induce guilt but to encourage awareness & inclusive discussions within a safe space.

The talk is aimed to understand (and take action) on how our unseen biases affect data and the progression of the mapping community including OSM. Strategies for addressing biases, enhancing data quality, and cultivating a more inclusive and equitable community, will also be addressed."

I am currently pursuing a PhD at the University of Newcastle, Australia and have been leading and organising OSM community events in Fiji under OSM Fiji for the last three years. My research investigates the feasibility of remote sensing as a tool to monitor invasive alien plant species in the Pacific and is supported by the Pacific Regional Invasive Speices Management Support Services (PRISMSS) faciliated by SPREP. Prior to my PhD I worked in the geospatial industry across the Pacific region, based in Fiji, my home.

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