Disaster & Humanitarian Relief

FailFaire – where it's okay to admit the mistakes. MobileActive hosted another round of FailFaire, bringing together practitioners, developers, donors, and students involved in the use of technology for social change development to discuss what's usually swept under the rug – project failure. The event is an open space to discuss those projects that went wrong in our field fostering a sense of learning from mistakes and knowledge sharing. The latest FailFaire in New York brought together eight practitioners to present their failed projects and what they learned along the way.  Take a look at this FastCompany article about the NYC FailFaire for some background. 

So, here we bring you...

12.16.11 AnneryanHeatwole Advocacy Democratic Participation Disaster & Humanitarian Relief Health

Txteagle is a data collection and engagement platform that leverages mobile airtime compensation for data collection and customer engagement. It is currently used by one nonprofit organization to survey constituents about disaster preparedness. We looked into the company and one of its customers.

Txteagle widely advertises its ability to reach 2.1 billion mobile subscribers currently. MobileActive.org spoke with Nathan Eagle, co-founder of the service, to learn more about how it works, how many active participants there are and where some of the large numbers come from. We also spoke with Terry Gibson, project manager for the Global Network of Civil Society Organisations for Disaster Reduction, who is currently using txteagle to collect mobile data on 40,000 respondents in 48 countries.

02.07.11 MelissaUlbricht Disaster & Humanitarian Relief

In this how-to, we test out two systems for SMS incident mapping. Incident mapping is a simple but powerful concept that does what it says - using SMS to report a given incidence and mapping the data geographically.

It has been used in various scenarios ranging from reports from natural disasters to tracking violent crime, citizen reporting in elections.

Ushahidi, a platform for map and time-based visualizations of text reports, has been used most prominently in crisis mapping. The first instance of Ushahidi tracked the post-election violence in Kenya in 2007, closely followed by an instance covering outbreaks of xenophobic violence in South Africa in early 2008. Following the Haiti earthquake in early 2010, an Ushahidi deployment at Tufts University provided a platform for aggregating, translating and disseminating incident reports and requests for assistance. Ushahidi is an open-source  PHP/Javascript platform.

05.03.10 MelissaLoudon Advocacy Citizen Media Democratic Participation Disaster & Humanitarian Relief Health