With the support of the New World Foundation Prof. Sara Wylie and Publiclab.org have been collaboratively developing a tool for crowd sourcing image analysis following disasters. Online open source tools are transforming disaster response by enabling the public to augment federal agencies in providing and directing assistance. Using a Public Lab tool during Hurricane Sandy, Open Street Maps Humanitarian Team (HOT OSM) collaborated with FEMA to organize 6000 online volunteers to sort images of the damage. The project helped to rapidly identify damaged areas and target FEMA’s relief effort. In collaboration with Computer Science faculty member Seth Cooper, Wylie and Public Lab are developing this infrastructure into a stable crowdsourcing tool to help with disaster response related to fracking. Undergraduate Rebecca Govoni received a Northeastern Provost Research Award to work on the project.
SSEHRI | Northeastern University | Boston, MA