3 January 2014, Bangkok, Thailand - The expansion of UNOSAT activities in Asia Pacific is increasing the number of its in-country capacity development activities, especially in the area of disaster risk reduction and emergency response. In December 2013 UNOSAT experts have delivered in Bangladesh a new training course on “Geospatial Information Technology for DRR: From Risk Assessment to Emergency Response”. The training course implemented was organized together with the Asian Preparedness Disaster Centre (ADPC) and took place in Dhaka from 1 to 5 December 2013.

UNOSAT completes in-country training for BangladeshThe course was tailored for 16 disaster management professionals drawn from various governmental entities in Bangladesh. The learning objectives included understanding the role of GIS in risk assessment and becoming familiar with satellite based impact analysis in the aftermath of a disaster. As per UNOSAT standards, the course utilised cases studies based on datasets and satellite imagery from past events occurred in Bangladesh. Hands-on training sessions complemented the theoretical parts of the course.

Luca Dell'Oro who coordinates training and capacity development at UNOSAT says “it was rewarding to see that all participants were so motivated and had high interest in the subject.  Throughout the course, they shared their own professional experience in disaster management and their lessons from past disasters, which turned the course into a learning opportunity for us as well”.

UNOSAT in-country trainings have been rated very positively by national experts so far and Bangladesh was no exception. The course received very positive feedback from the participant’s including: “the course was really good and informative. Such types of trainings are very useful for both governmUNOSAT completes in-country training for Bangladeshent and private agencies to come up with the same level of understanding so that in case of an emergency both agencies can work together” and, “actually this training is very much helpful in my professional field”.

This training completes an initial three-year regional capacity development programme launched by UNOSAT in 2011 in collaboration with ADPC with support from the Norwegian government. Before Bangladesh, the programme benefitted Vietnam in 2011 and Myanmar in 2012. UNOSAT is now planning a second round of in-country trainings starting in 2014 in the framework of an enlarged partnership including ESCAP and boosted by the new UNOSAT presence in Bangkok.