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New York City's New "Code Corps," A Volunteer Force of Techies in Disaster Response

BY Miranda Neubauer | Thursday, February 14 2013

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a new initiative called Code Corps in his State of the City address today, billed as the country's first municipal program that brings volunteer technologists to bear on city government's emergency and disaster recovery needs. Read More

After Sandy, Are FEMA and the Red Cross Helpmates to Neighborhood Volunteers, Not Their Leaders?

BY Joe Maniscalco | Friday, November 16 2012

The Internet didn't create the outpouring of citizen-to-citizen care that has so often beaten traditional relief agencies like the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Red Cross to Hurricane Sandy-ravaged communities all over the tri-state area - but it certainly helped to channel it. The rise of grassroots organizing channeled through online resources in times of crisis has been so profound that FEMA and the Red Cross aren't even pretending they can do a better job than web-adept citizens groups like Occupy Sandy when it comes to immediately moving people or supplies - or even that they are supposed to. Read More

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Ushahidi and the Long Tail of Mapping for Social Change

BY David Eaves | Monday, July 9 2012

What makes a mapping project successful? Image: Trafficking map Epawa SMS

A new website called DeadUshahidi launched recently with the express purpose of tracking Ushahidi mapping projects that experienced little use. While the Ushahidi team responded in good form, but it was hard not to see the website as a shot across its bow.

David Eaves explores why there are so many Ushahidi-powered mapping projects that appear to have fallen by the wayside — and why that might actually be a good thing for people who want to use geospatial data for social change.

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PD+ This Thurs 1pm: When Disaster Strikes, Social Media Can Help--Lessons From Joplin

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, June 26 2012

It's summer, and that means we may be in for another round of freaky weather extremes. Hopefully that won't include the city of Joplin, Missouri, which was hit by an extremely powerful tornado a little more than a year ... Read More

The Problem With Crowdsourced Disaster Response

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, August 30 2011

On Code for America's blog, their communications director, Abhi Nemani, picks apart the use of crowdsourcing in New York City around Hurricane Irene and comes out wondering if crowd submission platforms, while they ... Read More

Tracking the Floodwaters' Rise With Open Data

BY Nick Judd | Monday, August 29 2011

Map of flood waters from NOAA.gov data, rendered in Google Earth. Video of rising floodwaters and dramatic rescues haven't been hard to find in the wake of Hurricane Irene, but the bigger picture might have been lost as ... Read More

An East Coast Earthquake, Quantified

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, August 23 2011

Virginia earthquake response map via USGS.gov It's been less than an hour since an estimated 5.9-magnitude earthquake shook up the East Coast with an epicenter about 27 miles east of Charlottesville, Va., and already ... Read More

When Disaster Strikes, Local Meets Social

BY Nick Judd | Monday, May 23 2011

Fast Company's Neal Ungerleider explores how people in Missouri used social media to communicate in the aftermath of a Sunday tornado that ripped the town of Joplin to shreds: Joplin is a mid-sized community of ... Read More

On Tweeting in a Tornado

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, May 5 2011

Federal Emergency Management Administration Administrator Craig Fugate is now discussing social media and disaster response with the Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs. C-SPAN is offering ... Read More