From drones to social media, big data helps confront more complex disasters in Asia

Bangkok (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Technological innovations – from unique digital identities for drought-hit farmers to use of data from drones and social media – can better predict increasingly complex disasters in the Asia-Pacific region and limit their impact on vulnerable people, the United Nations said in a report on Thursday.

Rising global temperatures have increased the frequency and intensity of floods, cyclones and droughts in the region, making it harder to accurately forecast and monitor them, according to the report by the U.N.’s Asia-Pacific social agency (UNESCAP). But “big data innovations – using the large data sets from mobile phone tracking to satellite platforms – reveal patterns, trends, and associations of complex disaster risks,” said Armida Alisjahbana, UNESCAP’s executive secretary.

Author: Rina Chandran

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