1 minute readInternational

Two International Stories You May Have Missed

red cross gis lead examines a map in the field international

Open data opens doors to international disaster relief

Our very own Dale Kunce was featured in the Center for Data Innovation this month. His extensive Q&A is a special treat for those interested in innovative disaster relief efforts, in particular for any mappers and technophiles out there.

I’ve been a geographic information systems (GIS) professional for around 15 years now, and I’ve learned that you can absolutely trust 1,000 people to make maps. We’re using OpenStreetMap, an openly licensed world map that’s been coined “the Wikipedia of maps.” Every time someone makes an edit someone else is following along and can verify it if it isn’t perfect. This means the maps are constantly improving, the same way that when major news breaks, it’s on Wikipedia immediately.

For more details on how this works, with examples from Hurricane Matthew, Typhoon Haiyan and an area in west Africa, hop over to the Center for Data Innovation.

A rescue in Aleppo, as told by a Red Cross doctor

News about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Aleppo has filled up our news channels and Facebook feeds the past few days, but one piece from the BBC stuck out to us. This is a letter from a doctor with the ICRC, who was able to rescue a group of people out of eastern Aleppo. He tells a heartbreaking, harrowing tale that begins with a statement:

Working as a doctor for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), I have seen many things in Syria during the past five years. But nothing like this.

Read the letter published by the BBC, and learn more about the situation in Syria on redcross.org.

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