PetaBencana.id provides residents, government agencies, and first responders with a real-time disaster information sharing system at an unprecedented scale. It is the first platform of its kind to harness the power of crowdsourcing through social media to aid humanitarian response and recovery.

News

MapaKalamidad.ph takes Next-Generation Bayanihan to a national level!

Vice President Leni Robredo’s message during the national launch of MapaKalamidad.ph

Disaster Map Foundation (Yayasan Peta Bencana), supported by USAID BHA and endorsed by the Office of Civil Defense (OCD), officially launched MapaKalamidad.ph, a free and open-source real-time flood mapping platform for the Philippines. 

In 2021, the Philippines was struck by a total of 22 storms, nine typhoons, and five super typhoons. The most recent, Typhoon Odette, strengthened from a Category 1 to 5 typhoon in just one day making it difficult for people to prepare for the arrival of the storm or to evacuate. As the rapid intensification of storms becomes more common due to climate change, real-time information is increasingly becoming the most important resource to understand and respond to rapidly changing situations.

MapaKalamidad.ph is a free and open-source platform that provides real-time disaster information and transparent communication between residents and government agencies, in order to reduce risk and increase emergency response times during the sudden onset of disasters. The online platform harnesses the use of social media to crowdsource disaster information from residents on the ground, who often have the most up-to-date information, and displays this information on a live web-based map. 

MapaKalamidad.ph crowdsources flood updates from residents on the ground who often have the most up-to-date information.

The Philippines has some of the highest social media usage rates in the world, and during disasters, social media feeds are inundated with real-time updates by residents calling for help and posting information. However, there is currently no central platform where these posts or reports can be viewed and accessed collectively or spatially. This is the gap that MapaKalamidad.ph fills—by filtering through disaster-related social media posts in real-time, the platform deploys AI-assisted “humanitarian chatbots” to ask social media users to confirm their situation. Verified reports are displayed on a data light, mobile-centric, web-based map that is available to all residents, disaster managers, and emergency responders in order to allow them to view and share real-time flood information and make timely decisions to reduce risk. 

The official launch was opened by Madame Vice President Leni Robredo. In her opening remarks, she stated: “In imagining next-gen bayanihan, MapaKalamidad.ph harnesses not just the power of new tools and technologies, it is built on what is best in the Filipino. I urge everyone, especially youth, not just to share and use share [MapaKalamidad.ph] but to help lead your communities in reducing risk, building resilience, and fostering solidarity to face the ever-growing challenges of our changing climate.”

Madame Vice President Leni Robredo continued to highlight the urgent necessity to invest proactively in disaster preparedness, stating: “We have long been advocating for stronger disaster preparedness, with risk management plans anchored in our climate change realities, budgeting that prioritizes climate-resilient adaptation programs, and empowering systems that consult and engage affected communities at every step of the process. MapaKalamidad is a significant contribution in this endeavor.”

Madame Vice President Leni Robredo’s inaugural report on MapaKalamidad.ph marking the official launch of the national version of the flood mapping platform for the Philippines!

A pilot version of MapaKalamidad.ph was launched in 2020 for Quezon City and Pampanga, in collaboration with the Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) as part of the PhilAWARE project. Powered by CogniCity Open Source Software, the platform provides the fastest tool to collect, sort, and visualize real-time disaster updates in order to support response. During Typhoon Ulysess in November 2020, the platform experienced a significant increase in activity as residents in the pilot areas actively shared real-time situational updates about the flood. MapaKalamidad.ph was used to support residents and disaster management units to identify the areas that needed immediate response and rescue efforts. Following the uptake of the platform in the pilot areas, Yayasan Peta Bencana, together with USAID BHA and OCD officially launched the national version of the platform on January 14, 2022.

Nashin Mahtani, Director of Yayasan Peta Bencana, said: “In building the next generation of bayanihan, it is critical to empower all residents with the tools, agency, and support that will enable communities to self-organize, more equally participate in decision making during emergencies, and adapt to increasingly extreme weather events. By sharing real-time reports about disasters through MapaKalamidad.ph, we can help each other, neighbors, emergency agencies, and first responders better respond to emergency situations.”

According to Joseph Curry, from USAID BHA, “While we depend on the government to be the authoritative source on damages and needs, we also recognize that those affected have the most up to date information and have an essential role to play. MapaKalamidad.ph adds a new dimension to data and information collection by empowering citizens to directly report hazards, critical lifelines, and damages in their neighborhoods via social media. In the true spirit of bayanihan, MapaKalamidad.ph gives us a tool that everyone can use together in disaster response, potentially connecting every barangay right to the top.”

Any resident in the Philippines can submit flood reports anonymously by tweeting #flood or #baha @mapakalamidad, sending a Facebook message to @mapakalamidad, or sending a telegram message to @kalamidadbot, and check https://mapakalamidad.ph for real-time flood updates to navigate safely.

M+ Museum acquires CogniCity OSS for their permanent collection of 21st century urban design

In 2020, M+ Museum of visual culture in Hong Kong acquired CogniCity OSS for their permanent collection of 21st century urban design in Asia; the source code remains open and in use, but they also commissioned Yayasan Peta Bencana to make a video to tell the story of the project for their visitors. 

The Same River, Twice is a two channel film installation that narrates the story of Jakarta as a megacity struggling to adapt to climate change during the tropical monsoon season, and how an integrated approach to software design is harnessing collective resident epistemologies to mitigate urban risk. The film made its first public preview at the opening of the museum on November 12th, 2021 and is available to view in person as part of their permanent collection.

Ahead of extreme monsoon weather, Indonesia and the Philippines collaborate to launch regional Youth Disaster Risk Reduction Program

 Yayasan Peta Bencana, supported by USAID BHA and endorsed by Indonesian National Board for Disaster Management (BNPB) and the Office of Civil Defense (OCD), officially launched a regional disaster risk reduction youth program for Indonesia and the Philippines. As more frequently occurring extreme weather events continue to strike both countries, young leaders expressed their solidarity and commitment to reducing risk with the hashtags #Youth4GotongRoyong and #Youth4Bayanihan. The launch was opened by Dr. Raditya Jati, Deputy of Systems and Strategy of BNPB, Usec Ricardo B. Jalad, Executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) and administrator of the OCD, and Mr. Harlan Hale, Regional Advisor of USAID BHA, who welcomed hundreds of youth and over 60 community organizations attending the online opening. 

Led by the conviction that mitigating disaster risk must involve all residents, the youth ambassador program commits to amplifying the agency of young people all across the region so that they can equally participate in disaster recovery efforts and make informed and safe decisions for themselves and their communities during emergencies. Half of the world’s population are youth under the age of 30, and they are often the first and most affected when weather related disasters strike. According to the 2020 World Disasters Report, Indonesia and the Philippines are among the most vulnerable to weather related disasters and it is inevitable that the countries will continue to experience an increase in extreme weather. To cope with the increasing frequency and severity of weather-related events, experts emphasize the necessity to focus efforts on adaptation; minimizing exposure and vulnerability by increasing capacities for residents to respond to shocks, which must necessarily include the most vulnerable groups. 

Nashin Mahtani, Director of Yayasan Peta Bencana, said: “In building the next generation of gotong royong and bayanihan, it is critical to empower youth leaders with the tools, agency, and support that will enable communities to self-organize, more equally participate in decision making during emergencies, and adapt to increasingly extreme weather events. By sharing real-time reports about disasters through PetaBencana.id and MapaKalamidad.ph, youth ambassadors will continue to help each other, neighbors, emergency agencies, and first responders better respond to emergency situations.”

PetaBencana.id (in Indonesia) and MapaKalamidad.ph (in the Philippines) are real-time disaster information sharing platforms run by Yayasan Peta Bencana. The online platforms harness the use of social media to crowdsource disaster information from residents on-the-ground, who often have the most up-to-date information. Moving far beyond passive data mining, the platforms deploy “humanitarian chatbots” to automatically respond to social media posts about disasters and ask users to confirm their situation by submitting a disaster report. These reports are used to map disasters in real-time on a freely accessible website, so that anyone can understand rapidly changing conditions during emergency events. Operational since 2013 in Indonesia and 2019 in the Philippines, the platforms provide transparent communication between residents and government agencies, and have been used by millions of resident users, emergency managers, and first responders to make time-critical decisions about safety and navigation during disasters. 

“This is the best event to encourage youth participation in disaster risk reduction. Yayasan Peta Bencana’s DRR Youth Ambassador program is aligned with the vision of BNPB, and the 2045 vision of Indonesia. The nation’s resilience to disaster depends on building an effective and efficient disaster emergency system through participation of the young generation. As the leaders of today and tomorrow, we invite all youth to be part of this initiative.” said Dr. Raditya Jati, Deputy of Systems and Strategy of BNPB.

Usec. Ricardo Kalad from the Office of Civil Defense said, “Use this day’s launch as an avenue to help you work in your respective communities as DRR Youth Ambassadors and support the efforts to empower the youth, your loved ones, your neighbors, and our countrymen towards safety, adaptation and resilience in these times of the new normal. This goal is most crucial to the future of our people as we face the challenges that lie ahead. I trust that our youth is always up to the task.”

As part of the USAID CogniCity Open Source Software for Next Generation DRR Program, the DRR youth ambassador program will provide youth with the training and support to become “first reporters” with PetaBencana.id and MapaKalamidad.ph. As Indonesia’s youth are the most frequent and enthusiastic users of social media—spending an average of four hours a day just on social media—empowering them to use these same platforms to participate in disaster risk reduction will be transformational for coordination and recovery. Monthly campaigns, podcasts, and skill-building webinars with a variety of experts from government, business, academia, artists, scientists, and community groups will strengthen capacities for youth to become active leaders and drivers of transformation in their communities through a multi-dimensional, multi-sectoral, and multi-disciplinary approach. 

Forecasts have alerted an increased chance of above-normal rainfall over much of the ASEAN region in the coming months, with Indonesia likely to experience 80% above normal rainfall as early as October. In preparation for the upcoming extreme weather the launch event kicked off with a 24-hour preparedness challenge, calling on all youth participants to train their neighbors and friends about actionable steps to reduce risk and disaster information sharing. In under 24 hours, youth trained 1529 people!  

About

Powered by CogniCity Open Source Software, PetaBencana.id is a free, web-based platform that produces real-time disaster maps using both crowd-sourced reporting and government agency validations. The platform harnesses the heightened use of social media and instant messaging during emergency events to gather confirmed situational updates from street level, in a manner that removes the need for expensive and time consuming data processing. These verified user reports are displayed alongside relevant emergency data collected by local and government agencies. By integrating localized knowledge from a variety of sources into a single, robust platform, PetaBencana.id is able to provide a comprehensive overview of disaster events, enabling residents, humanitarian agencies, and government agencies to make more informed decisions during emergencies.

Since its debut in 2013 (as PetaJakarta.org), the PetaBencana.id platform has been used by millions of resident users to make time-critical decisions about safety and navigation during emergency disaster events; it has also been adopted by the National Emergency Management Agency (BNPB) to monitor flood events, improve response times, and share time-critical emergency information with residents. The platform has enabled greater information sharing and data coordination among residents and government agencies, fostering equitable and collaborative resilience to climate change.

PetaBencana.id has proven that community-led data collection, sharing, and visualization reduces flood risk and assists in relief efforts. In the 2015 World Disaster Report of the International Federation of the Red Cross, the project was recommended as a model for community engagement in relation to disaster response. In 2016, the Federal Communication Commission of the United States also recommended the project as a best practice regarding disaster information crowdsourcing.

Publications

2018

Mahtani N. and E. Turpin. “Neuroecologies of Attention & Intelligence in the Megacity: Learning with PetaBencana.id,” in Perspecta 51: Becoming Media The Yale Architectural Journal, November 2018.

2017

Mahtani, Nashin. “Impressions of Disaster: Neuroscience, Design, and Attention
in Post-Internet Indonesia,” in e-flux Architecture, August, 2017.

2016


Turpin, E., and T. Holderness. “From Social Media to GeoSocial Intelligence: Experiments with Crowdsourcing Civic Co-Management for Flood Response in Jakarta, Indonesia,” in Social Media for Government Services, eds. Surya Nepal, Cécile Paris, Dimitrios Georgakopoulos (Springer, 2016).

Holderness, T., and E. Turpin, “How tweeting about floods became a civic duty in Jakarta,” in The Guardian, Public Leaders Network, 25 January 2016.

2015

Holderness T. and E. Turpin. “Floods in Jakarta? Tweeting Now,” in Strategic Review 5.1(October-December 2015): 26-35.

Holderness T., and E. Turpin. PetaJakarta.org: Assessing the Role of Social Media for Civic
Co-Management During Monsoon Flooding in Jakarta, Indonesia
, SMART Infrastructure Facility, University of Wollongong, GeoSocial Intelligence Working Group White Paper 01 (June 2015).

2014

Turpin, E., T. Holderness, and G. Quaggiotto. “Combining ‘Big’ and ‘Small’ Data to Build Urban Resilience in Jakarta,” United Nations Global Pulse Blog, April 2014.

2013

Turpin, E., A. Bobbette, and M. Miller, eds. Jakarta: Architecture + Adaptation (Depok: Universitas Indonesia Press, 2013).

Get Involved

The PetaBencana.id community is made up of a diverse group of volunteers, local community leaders, and professionals dedicated to building capacities for community-based disaster co-management. There are a number of ways to get involved!

Support open data & open software for climate adaptation:

Help us keep the map running as a free platform, so that everyone in Indonesia can have access to time critical information!

To donate via wire transfer, please email info@petabencana.id.

Become a Sustaining Partner: 

Partner with Yayasan Peta Bencana to increase employee engagement and Corporate Social Responsibility Programs! We also work with organisations to provide customized alerts to ensure the safety of your belongings and staff.

Become a Risk Ambassador:

Are you passionate about spreading disaster awareness and increasing preparedness in your communities? Sign up to become a risk ambassador – no experience needed, we will provide you the support you need!

Technology and Training:     

Yayasan Peta Bencana provides training to organizations, embassies, schools, and volunteer communities. Through digital literacy workshops we provide the necessary skills to safely and easily access and share time-critical information – leveraging capacities for everyone to participate in critical decision-making and boost community resilience. We can customize training to meet the needs of your organization.

Sign up for a training by sending us an email at info@petabencana.id!

Bring the crowd-sourced disaster mapping platform to your location:

The platform is now being further developed to address additional hazards and other geographies in South East Asia. If you would like to see a crowd-sourced disaster mapping platform implemented in your area, please contact us at info@petabencana.id.

Volunteer:

Contact us for current volunteer activities, or if you would like to get involved in other ways! We would love to hear from you!