Using mobile phones to predict population displacement during major disasters in real time


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Web http://www.flowminder.org/

In development

About the project Edit

Flowrider aims to improve disaster response by collecting, aggregating, analyzing and disseminating anonymized mobile phone location data in industry standard geographic information system (GIS) formats to NGOs and relief agencies in near real time.

During large disasters and crises, there is a severe lack of basic information on the locations of affected people. This prevents relief organizations from delivering the right amounts of supplies to the right places, even when sufficient resources are available.

Relief coordinators currently rely on eyewitness accounts, manual headcounts, registration of people in camps, satellite or aerial images of shelters or changes in vegetation, for example. These approaches are either subject to heavy bias or are too slow to provide robust decision support in rapidly changing conditions.

Collecting and tracking anonymous location data based on data given by mobile phone providers can solve this problem. With mobile phone data, Flowrider can track population movement when crises occur in near real-time. This gives an incredible advantage to crisis response organizations when it comes time to provide relief such as installing camps, delivering supplies such as medication, food and water, and first-aid.

In what ways is this project unique and creative? Edit

Flowrider uses data provided by mobile phone and puts it to humanitarian use.

What is the social value of this project? Edit

What is the potential of this project to expand and develop? Edit

Still in startup phase, Flowminder is currently working to establish partnerships with leading agencies, operators and other stakeholders.

What was the triggering factor of this project? Edit

What is the business model of this project? Edit

Flowminder is currently setting up a non-profit entity based in Stockholm, Sweden, to operationalize their project results.

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