UNITAR/UNOSAT and Google Map Maker to Boost Community Mapping for Disaster Relief and Humanitarian Aid

UNITAR/UNOSAT (the operational satellite applications program of UNITAR) and Google have signed an agreement today as on July 15, that will give the crisis response and humanitarian community increased access to Google Map Maker source data for use in their disaster response and humanitarian activities, in more than 150 countries around the world (see second […]

UNITAR/UNOSAT (the operational satellite applications program of UNITAR) and Google have signed an agreement today as on July 15, that will give the crisis response and humanitarian community increased access to Google Map Maker source data for use in their disaster response and humanitarian activities, in more than 150 countries around the world (see second pic below)," informed Lat Long blog.

"Under this agreement UNITAR/UNOSAT will act as a conduit within the United Nations family and its Member States to make Google Map Maker data more widely and easily available to aid organizations in the event of major disasters and for humanitarian efforts. In addition, government and UNs agencies will be able to contact UNOSAT/UNITAR (email unosat@unitar.org) for consideration as potential licensees of the Map Maker data, for their disaster response, humanitarian and development projects," Lat Long blog stated.

This agreement builds on dozens of previous joint mapping efforts between UNITAR/UNOSAT and Google, such as the ones that were coordinated for Pakistan, Sudan, and West Africa.

UNOSAT Manager Francesco Pisano said that "Google Map Maker gives us access to baseline data over areas where detailed info is usually unavailable. Now roads, bridges, buildings, and other services, with local and official names, can be mapped and damages tracked in near real-time. This new ability to integrate Map Maker data more widely into our satellite analysis will have a monumental impact on UNOSAT's ongoing efforts to make geographic information a key part of providing information for modern humanitarian relief. This agreement will also bring key benefits to the broader disaster and humanitarian community by making Map Maker data more widely and easily available."


UNOSAT map of the flood-affected areas in Pakistan. It uses Map Maker data as its primary source of Road and Place names data.

[Source: Lat Long blog]