July 2011, Benghazi, Libya – ACTED and UNOSAT have expanded their cooperation by joining forces in the area of humanitarian assessment in the field. In Libya, ACTED experts in the field and UNOSAT analysts in Geneva have been working jointly using satellite imagery analysis and ground surveys to create impact assessment maps that are used by humanitarian operators in Benghazi and Misratah. After the previous successful projects in Kyrgyzstan, where dedicated GIS solutions were created and implemented in the wake of inter-ethnic clashes, ACTED and UNOSAT are now producing joint field assessment maps combining geospatial analysis and field surveys.
These geographic information products are designed to meet field requirements during crisis relief: they are simple and contain only essential information. They are very well rated by humanitarian field workers and they are updated constantly as the situation evolves. A first batch of joint maps has been in circulation since several weeks in Libya and has sparked very positive feedback.
“These are the first of a series of new geospatial applications that we are developing together with the user community”, says the Manager of UNOSAT. “We are testing the impact and gathering feedback. New and more efficient web-supported solutions will be rolled out soon. They will include geo-tagging and the possibility to ingest data, photos and information generated by the crowd”.
ACTED and UNOSAT have initiated a test project named REACH in 2010, which they want to implement at full scale in 2011 to provide the humanitarian community with more reliable and faster access to integrated information and geo-data on field assessment.