The United Nations International Conference on Space-based Technologies on for
The United Nations International Conference on Space-based Technologies on for Disaster Management - "Multi-hazard Disaster Risk Assessment" was successfully inaugurated on 15 September 2014 in Beijing, China. This Conference held from 15 to 17 September 2014 is co-organized by the UN-SPIDER Beijing Office of UNOOSA and the Ministry of Civil Affairs of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), in collaboration with the Department of Treaty and Law, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of PRC, the Department of Social Security, the Ministry of Finance of PRC, the Department of System Engineering, China National Space Administration of PRC, the Asia Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO) and with the support of DigitalGlobe.
The Deputy Chief of the Russian Space agency ROSCOSMOS announced that Russia plans to sign an agreement with China this year on the issue of installing GLONASS and Beidou stations in China and Russia, respectively. GLONASS is the Russian satellite navigation system, Beidou is the Chinese navigation system.
As a follow up to Technical Advisory Missions (TAM) that the UN-SPIDER programme had conducted in Asian and African countries, this training course was organized. It specifically targeted participants from countries where Technical Advisory Support had been extended in recent years.
20 officials from eight African countries (Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria and Sudan) and officials from five countries from the Asia-Pacific region (Fiji, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Samoa and Viet Nam) took part in the training course.
The objective of the training course was to strengthen the capacity of national agencies in the use of space-based technologies for drought monitoring and assessment. The training included comprehensive hands-on sessions based on data sets (satellite images) prepared for Africa and Asia. The main topics were drought management and space technology; satellite data processing and spatial-temporal analysis; space technology applications for drought risk assessment; and space technology applications for drought monitoring and loss assessment.
The training programme was led by experts of UN-SPIDER, Delta University (United States), the Asia-Pacific Regional Office of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the University of Twente (Netherlands), the International Water Management Institute and the Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
25 participants took part in the course: Mid-level managers and technical staff of agencies involved in disaster management and hazard mapping, disaster related education, infrastructure development, disaster forecasting and warning provider, disaster response, natural resource management. Participants came both from member countries of APSCO (Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization) and country partners of UN‐SPIDER.
The course focused on disaster risk assessment (especially flood and drought), relief needs assessment, situation analysis, early warning systems, and international standards related to disaster prevention and mitigation. The objective of the training was to strengthen the capacity of the national agencies to use geospatial technologies for flood and drought management. It provided an insight on the use of satellite images and spatial information in flood and drought risk management by providing hands‐on training on using spatial data for risk mapping, flood modelling and rapid mapping (damage assessment). Thus, the training demonstrated the use of space based information in the entire cycle of flood management. The participants benefited from the experience sharing by experts from the centres of excellence, demonstration of the best practices in various countries and practical sessions on the software tools. The full programme is available here.