[HOT] Including hazards in OSM - First draft of typology and methodology

Kate Chapman kate at maploser.com
Fri May 18 14:30:50 BST 2012

Hey Robert,

It wasn't really flood zone mapping that we were doing. Basically we mapped
all the village boundaries and noted if they flooded in 2007 (this was for
Jakarta). This won't replace the scientific flood models, it was more of a
historical record.

My thought about mapping the delineation of previous hazards is that though
potentially useful the actual editing with all the other OpenStreetMap data
will be problematic. I see this as something that could be well served to
be collected using FieldPapers and then stored in another database.

As for creating kits to collect exposure data I think that is a great idea.
We will be moving into some sort of method like that in Indonesia, since
the methodology has been tested now it is making it possible for more
people to participate even more.


On Fri, May 18, 2012 at 7:08 AM, Robert Soden <robert.soden at gmail.com>wrote:

> Hi Stephane,
> Just to be clear, I really like the idea of community-based hazard mapping
> as a way of involving people in conversations about emergency preparedness
> activities and drr planning.  My concerns are related to the use of the
> results of these exercises in risk modeling and even if we could address
> those, I just don't think OSM is the right platform.  It's an interesting
> and open question to me as to whether the point of this kind of work is to
> produce meaningful data at all.  Historically this has not been the
> emphasis of participatory GIS, where the value is seen much more as the
> process and conversation that happens along the way.
> 1 - I worry very much about the ability to establish consistency of
> classification of hazard levels and limitations on geographical
> meaningfulness that would actually lend itself to a collaborative approach.
>  Collaboration requires some basic standards that to me seem difficult to
> come to and use in this case.  There are efforts underway to improve hazard
> models in many countries and this doesn't seem to be something where OSM
> can make a significant contribution.  Event-based hazard delineation is
> indeed used but is problematic for lots of reasons right?  It also still
> requires processing of the data on individual events.
> 2- I hadn't heard about the flood zone mapping and would probably have had
> a similar opinion on that  :)
> I do think that if the goal here is to get OSM data used more in risk
> assessment than we have a strong opportunity to do entirely defensible work
> on things like building stock, location of schools and hospitals and other
> critical infrastructure that is in line with best practice risk modeling.
>  But we're still in very early days on this from what I've seen and a lot
> more could be done towards developing the methodologies for that.  I would
> definitely be interested in working on this with you, maybe HOT could start
> an effort on DRR and this could be an early initiative.  I have some ideas
> for a few other people we could involve.
> Robert
> On Fri, May 18, 2012 at 9:07 AM, Stéphane Henriod <s at henriod.info> wrote:
>> Thanks to both of you for your anwers! I see some reticences to include
>> hazard data, so let me add a few points :-)
>>    - The new "trend" in DRR (at least in the developing world) seems to
>>    put much more emphasis on vulnerability than on hazards. In other words,
>>    education, types of buildings, demographic structures... are seen as being
>>    the critical factors to caracterize the risk. The hazards themselves are
>>    only drafted as exposure zones (zones where it is known that there is / has
>>    been / can be potential for hazards). Such an approach doesn't necessarily
>>    require the traditional scientific knowledge that Kate mentioned, as hazard
>>    zones can be delineated based on past events only. You mention that, in
>>    Indonesia, hazard information is provided through scientific model but, in
>>    my experience, neither the base data (geological maps...) nor the know-how
>>    are available in some countries. Shouldn't we take advantage of the very
>>    collaborative model of OSM to facilitate the creation and diffusion of
>>    information in this field as well?
>>    - A very naive question from me: if we already somehow map flood
>>    zones, why not extend it to other types of hazards? Flood modelling (such
>>    as HEC-ras) is something atrocely complex but an approximation of the
>>    extent of the floods can be determined by discussion and / or observation.
>> I think the question is simply: *how complex and scientific must the
>> hazard data be to be meaningful for assesing the risk of communities
>> towards natural disasters?* My experience and feeling tell me that a
>> very naive approach can be very efficient (and, in any case, better that
>> doing nothing) but I also see the point of those who think that more
>> complex models are necessary...
>> Robert, I am also very interested in your point on the exposure methods
>> and data models and would also be happy working a bit on this.
>> best and thanks again for your thoughts,
>> Stéphane
>> --
>> "Le mot progrès n'aura aucun sens tant qu'il y aura des enfants
>> malheureux" -- Albert Einstein
>> "A journey does not need reasons. Before long, it proves to be reason
>> enough in itself. One thinks that one is going to make a journey, yet soon
>> it is the journey that makes or unmakes you." -- Nicolas Bouvier
>> Photos de voyages, photos de montagne: http://www.henriod.info
>> Skype: [image: Skype name: marmotte_la_gueuse]
>> Tajik mobile phone: +992 934 62 46 62
>> On Fri, May 18, 2012 at 7:52 AM, Robert Soden <robert.soden at gmail.com>wrote:
>>> 100% agreed with Kate on this.  OSM has great potential for collecting
>>> building and other information that could be used to build exposure
>>> databases.  The work HOT has done in Indonesia is an excellent example of
>>> this.  However, hazard information useful for actual risk modeling is much
>>> more complicated and not really able to be collected in meaningful ways
>>> through direct field observation alone.  Many countries already use the
>>> DesInventar platform to create historical disaster catalogs and there are a
>>> number of other initiatives underway to try to create platforms for sharing
>>> hazard models.  Unless I'm misunderstanding something, I don't see the
>>> OpenStreetMap toolset or approach as having much to add to the hazard
>>> aspect of risk modeling.  What would be extremely useful though is some
>>> effort towards devising best practices and simple, flexible data models
>>> around exposure data collection so more projects could get started with
>>> this.  Would be happy to spend a little bit of time working with people on
>>> this if its of interest.
>>> Cheers,
>>> Robert
>>> On Fri, May 18, 2012 at 3:16 AM, Kate Chapman <kate at maploser.com> wrote:
>>>> Hi Stéphane,
>>>> HOT has never previously mapped hazards really other than floods. Many
>>>> of these hazard e.g. landslides are not easy for the average person to
>>>> observe. Things like the geology and the slope need to be take into
>>>> account.  Mostly in Indonesia we map exposure. The exposure information
>>>> fits well into the typical information collected in OSM anyway. That data
>>>> is useful for other things, for example it is easy for your average person
>>>> to map that a building is 2 stories and made of brick. The hazard
>>>> information is provided through scientifically models and then the OSM data
>>>> feeds together with it to create impact models.
>>>> I think this would be better in a separate database or system.  The
>>>> power of OpenStreetMap is the easy to observe on the ground information can
>>>> be combined with this sort of data.
>>>> For example it is conceivable to take OSM data and do community risk
>>>> analysis through something like Field Papers.  Those two types of data
>>>> could then be combined together for mitigation actions to be decided on.
>>>> -Kate
>>>>  On Thu, May 17, 2012 at 4:01 PM, Stéphane Henriod <s at henriod.info>wrote:
>>>>>  Dear all,
>>>>> as already discussed in this thread (
>>>>> http://lists.openstreetmap.org/pipermail/hot/2012-April/001681.html),
>>>>> I am trying to start developing a typology and some methodology for the
>>>>> storage and display of hazard zones on OSM.
>>>>> Those of you who have followed the discussion know that some questions
>>>>> are still open (mainly, *should the hazard information be stored in
>>>>> the main Planet file, or somewhere else?*) but, IMO, we can save it
>>>>> for later and first start to think on the data model.
>>>>> On the wiki page OpenHazardMap (
>>>>> http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/OpenHazardMap), I propose an
>>>>> approach and a first draft (still incomplete) for keys and tags.
>>>>> While choosing the keys / tags, I tried to keep the following
>>>>> constraints in mind:
>>>>>    - It should be possible for non-specialists to collect the data.
>>>>>    Thus only information that one can collect either from interviews and
>>>>>    discussions or from translation from existing registries and studies is
>>>>>    necessary to feed the tags. There is no "scientific" measurement required
>>>>>    (although such measurement, if available, could easily be translated into
>>>>>    the proposed system)
>>>>>     - The number of keys should be limited, to avoid discouraging
>>>>>    those who will upload data (either from own observations or from
>>>>>    translation from existing hazard / disaster registers)
>>>>>    - The quantity of collected information should still be sufficient
>>>>>    to allow relevant analysis of a situation (not necessarily relevant for
>>>>>    hardcore scientists, but relevant for development / humanitarian
>>>>>    practitioners and for populations)
>>>>>    - It should be flexible enough to accept other types of hazards
>>>>> Please note that the approach I propose is adapted to quick-onset
>>>>> hazards only. Slow-onset hazards (droughts, cyclones...) might be more
>>>>> difficult to map and to integrate, but we should definitely give it a
>>>>> thought, given their deadly importance in some countries.
>>>>> Would be happy to read from people who have worked with those topics
>>>>> (Kate? Fred M? JGC? Rei?, others?) and to compare with what has been done
>>>>> in Haiti / Indonesia and what is planned in Senegal and / or other
>>>>> countries.
>>>>> Cheers,
>>>>> Stéphane
>>>>> PS: it's the first time I work on the wiki, so accept my apologies if
>>>>> the formatting, the links between the pages and the use of templates are a
>>>>> bit fishy!
>>>>> --
>>>>> "Le mot progrès n'aura aucun sens tant qu'il y aura des enfants
>>>>> malheureux" -- Albert Einstein
>>>>> "A journey does not need reasons. Before long, it proves to be reason
>>>>> enough in itself. One thinks that one is going to make a journey, yet soon
>>>>> it is the journey that makes or unmakes you." -- Nicolas Bouvier
>>>>> Photos de voyages, photos de montagne: http://www.henriod.info
>>>>> Skype: [image: Skype name: marmotte_la_gueuse]
>>>>> Tajik mobile phone: +992 934 62 46 62
>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>> HOT mailing list
>>>>> HOT at openstreetmap.org
>>>>> http://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/hot
>>>> _______________________________________________
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>>>> HOT at openstreetmap.org
>>>> http://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/hot
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