Simulations are key to determining if Ushahidi is the right tool for your project, event or emergency. We’re delighted that the Canadian government’s Center for Security Science, the City of Vancouver and Simon Fraser University participated in this documentary demonstrating the potential to use Ushahidi for citizen reporting in conjunction with official emergency responder tools.
CAUSE Resiliency (West Coast) Experiment 2011
The CAUSE Resiliency (West Coast) Experiment project 2011 was a collaboration between the governments of Canada and United States with operational emergency management communities in British Columbia and bordering states. The goal was to simulate an emergency response with the use and integration of some emerging technologies, including the Multi-Agency Situational Awareness System (MASAS), ESRI and Ushahidi. Simon Fraser University, under Dr. Peter Anderson’s guidance, trained students to use Ushahidi for citizen reports:
Citizens will use the many online communication channels (email, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Flickr, and more) and their mobile devices during an emergency. Examples like this demonstrate how official organizations can incorporate citizen reporting platforms like Ushahidi to plan, give voice and build partnerships with their communities. Emergency responders often say that citizens are the first responders and witnesses in their neighbourhoods. With training and planning, it is possible to have an installation of Ushahidi ready for emergencies and use the mobile applications. The mobile apps can be white-labelled and customized for your city or emergency response group. There is a huge opportunity to replicate this simulation model connecting official responders, universities and volunteers. All it takes is leadership, initiative and a plan.
The Canadian National MASAS Information eXchange (MASAS-X) supports operations, exercises and training. (www.MASAS-X.ca).
Special thanks to Jack Pagotto (Head, ESEC [Emergency Mgmt Systems & Interoperability, Surveillance/Intel, E-security, Critical Infrastructure Protection] Centre for Security Science) for funding and making this video clip available, Doug Allport, Senior Advisor, MASAS National Implementation Teamand the MASAS team for building software that connects citizens and emergency responders, Dr. Peter Anderson (Director, Telematics Research Lab, SFU Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology) for his support of Ushahidi and for engaging students, Daniel Stevens (Vancouver EOC) for his introduction, and as well many thanks to the actors and other professionals involved.
The SciFi geeks may recognize the actor who volunteered some of the narration as Bruce Greenwood, of the Star Trek movie fame and a native Vancouverite. This video was provided by Paul Childs, Planetworks Consulting with the film by Black Dog Productions.
More clips may be available from the Centre of Security Science on request.