January 20: Public access ICT in disaster management

TASCHA Talk by Maria Garrido & Beth Patin

January 20, 2011

Maria Garrido and Beth Patin will discuss the role of telecenters and libraries in the context of crisis informatics, an emerging field of inquiry. Crisis informatics reframes the role of public access to ICT in emergency response as a socially distributed information system that leverages citizen-to-citizen communication in the lifecycle of a disaster. Public access to computers and internet, particularly telecenters and libraries, can play an important role in preventing and responding to disasters or emergency situations. By providing access to information and acting as information sources, public access venues enable citizen-to-citizen generated information that fulfill important needs during and after a disaster. From the use of blogs, micro-blogging, social networking sites, and more, citizen communication and information activities serve critical, logistical, community-building, and other roles. Additionally, telecenters and libraries often play a variety of roles that go beyond ICT access, acting as shelters, resource providers, and coordination centers, improvising based on community needs.

View the presentation slides.

TASCHA Talks are bi-weekly sessions to share, discuss, and advance new ideas around topics related to technology and social change. Learn more at tascha.uw.edu/taschatalks.