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    A Vision for Technology-Mediated Support for Public Participation & Assistance in Mass Emergencies & Disasters

    ACM-BCS Visions of Computer Science 2010

    International Academic Research Conference

    14 - 16 April 2010, The University of Edinburgh

    AUTHORS

    Leysia Palen, Kenneth M. Anderson, Gloria Mark, James Martin, Douglas Sicker, Martha Palmer and Dirk Grunwald

    ABSTRACT

    We present a vision of the future of emergency management that better supports inclusion of activities and information from members of the public during disasters and mass emergency events. Such a vision relies on integration of multiple subfields of computer science, and a commitment to an understanding of the domain of application. It supports the hopes of a grid/cyberinfrastructure-enabled future that makes use of social software. However, in contrast to how emergency management is often understood, it aims to push beyond the idea of monitoring on-line activity, and instead focuses on an understudied but critical aspect of mass emergency response - the needs and roles of members of the public. By viewing the citizenry as a powerful, self-organising, and collectively intelligent force, information and communication technology can play a transformational role in crisis. Critical topics for research and development include an understanding of the quantity and quality of information (and its continuous change) produced through computer-mediated communication during emergencies; mechanisms for ensuring trustworthiness and security of information; mechanisms for aligning informal and formal sources of information; and new applications of information extraction techniques.

    PAPER FORMATS 

    PDF filePDF Version of this Paper (643kb)

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