[Osmf-talk] Humanitarian work (was: 2018 a third episode...)
nicolas.chavent at gmail.com
Wed Dec 19 08:16:18 UTC 2018
Thanks Mikel for contributing those elements in response to questions
raised in this email thread by Simon and others about how things
happened on the OSMF side at the event of the beginnings of the HOT
Project as an informal OSM collective and its incorporation as a US
Ngo in August 2010 after collective discussions amongst mappers in
Girona at the SoTM 2010 Girona to continue the OSM field work started
in Haiti March 2010 after the January 2010 Earthquake.
I have nothing to add on the OSMF side since as a Board member of the
foundation you were managing that relation while I was focusing on
supporting the OSM on the ground work in Haiti by all actors
(community and formal actors of the whole humanitarian system by then)
from afar or through field missions carried with other persons of the
HOT Project collective, Robert Soden, Dane Springmeyer and Kate
It's important in this collective read and look at the past, to fully
grasp the historical context within which this use of OSM across the
humanitarian/development sectors unfold which is fundamentally three
- the irruption of OSM as a base layer in GIS information management
for crisis response and recovery in the major emergency that was the
2010 Haiti quake first from afar (remote response) and then on the
ground (mission, OSM mappers embedded into IOM GIS Units... ) was a
revolution for the humanitarian system. The overall context for
GIS/Cartography crisis work is a radical change of paradigm for that
industry. And nothing was easy for anyone active in that system in
terms of understanding this revolution, planing and operating under
that new paradigm that was Volunteer Geographical Information (VGI)
actors at large and OSM in particular. This was true also for the
early believers of that paradigm in the humanitarian system, myself
included (World Food Program, UN Joint Logistics Cluster/Logistics
- one shall recall the strengths of OSMF at that time and the workload
for its Board of volunteers directors, the transparency and archiving
capacities at that time and the fact that none of them was cognizant
of the humanitarian/development work.
- In that context 1,2 years was an eternity and what Mikel laid out ",
never think I saw ahead more than a year or two." was the mindset of
all individuals within that HOT Project collective, the newly
incorporated US NGO HOT US Inc and all actors of the humanitarian
system at that time.
Hopefully, we will manage to bring forth even more pieces of archive,
and we will better understand the story of these relations between
OSMF and HOT project/HOT US Inc, this is surely a collective work item
for this future humanitarian/development working group.
For the sake of clarity and of archiving, we may consider also another
area, vehicle to organize the contents that arose from that email
discussion than solely this mailing list, since we contributed
interesting materials so far to lay the ground for an informal/formal
WG to start an interesting collective work.
On Wed, Dec 19, 2018 at 3:08 AM Mikel Maron <mikel.maron at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Just for fun: there was an action item on the 2010-2011 board minutes
> > dependent on "HOT integration" for many months. But as already said, the
> > minutes from the time are very sketchy and it is for the major part very
> > unclear who decided what and what the intended relationship with HOT was.
> Sometime soon, I want to spend some time looking back on the organizational development of HOT. From when I started with the concept in 2005, until today, never think I saw ahead more than a year or two. I never set out to start an organization -- I am happy where things ended up but also have many thoughts on what else could have been and can be.
> But quickly, I was curious to refresh my memory. In 2010, I was on the OSMF Board. We had just had the Haiti earthquake and HOT was finally real. And I was living in Kenya getting Map Kibera started.
> There are three distinct items in the Board minutes. From what I can recall at the time, I wanted to know if OSMF could be the organizational backbone for HOT activities, and even Map Kibera. I was regularly reporting to the Board on what was happening with these efforts. I thought providing support for this kinds of projects could be a great way for OSMF to grow. To work in Haiti or Kenya, and do these intensive projects, took funding, procurement, insurance, pay. To be honest, I had little direct experience myself at that point to know what it took to operationalize this kind of idea.
> From what I recall, the reception from the Board was interested and very supportive of all the exciting things happening in OSM at that moment ... but pretty cautious. Actually doing mapping would be an expansion of OSMF mandate. Also remember, we were pretty consumed with the license change during this period. We had no administrative staff. More critically, the question of whether this would create an employment situation, and the question of liability, were top of mind -- as they should have been.
> Looks like the topic to investigate was originally with Andy, then moved to me at some point. I found few concrete answers that would give us direction. I think the idea fizzled out, as there wasn't little enthusiasm for OSMF to take this on.
> * Mikel Maron * +14152835207 @mikel s:mikelmaron
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