Discussing the Recommendations of the Disaster 2.0 Report

It’s been well over a month since the Disaster 2.0 Report was publicly launched and while some conversations on the report have figured on the Crisis Mappers Network list-serve and the Standby Task Force blog, much of this discussion has largely overlooked the report’s detailed recommendations. I had hoped by now that someone would have taken the lead on catalyzing a debate around these recommendations, but since that still hasn’t happened, I might as well start.

The report’s authors clearly state that, “the development of an interface between the Volunteer and Technical Communities (V&TCs) and formal humanitarian system is a design problem that must be left to the stakeholders.” In addition, they clarify that “the purpose of this document is not to set forth the final word on how to connect new information flows into the international humanitarian system; but to initiate a conversation about the design challenges involved with this endeavor.” This conversation has yet to happen.

While the humanitarian community has proposed some design ideas, V&TCs have not responded in any detail to these proposals—although to be fair, no deadline for feedback has been suggested either. In any case, the proposed designs are meant to create an interface between humanitarian organizations and V&TCs—the two main stakeholders discussed in the Disaster 2.0 Report. It would be unfortunate and probably defeat the purpose of the report if the final interface were operationalized before any V&TCs had the chance to explain what would work best for them in terms of interface. Indeed, without an open and pro-active conversation that includes both stakeholder groups, it is unlikely that the final interface design will gain buy-in from both groups, which would result in wasted funding.

So here’s an open and editable Google Doc that includes the report’s recommen-dations. I have already added some of my comments to the Google Doc and hope others will as well. On June 1st, I will publish a new blog post that will summarize all the feedback added to the Google Doc. I hope this summary will serve to move the conversations forward so we can co-develop an interface that will prove useful and effective to all those concerned.

One response to “Discussing the Recommendations of the Disaster 2.0 Report

  1. Patrick, I’d be more than happy to collaborate on this; it’s something I agree needs addressing. The paper I’m presenting at RSLS this week actually proposes the implementation of several things that would progress this, noting that APCMCOE where I work has no jurisdiction beyond Australia, but works with its peers across the globe including OCH, the AU, Folke Bernadotte in Sweden and others.

    What I’ve proposed is:

    better digital literacy for civil-military officials including the creation of a community for civil-military officials along the model of GovLoop and the SBTF communities
    direct engagement with VTCs (issue over that term notwithstanding) to build understanding between them and officials
    comprehensive research into hyperconnected conflict and disaster management leading to new doctrine for civil-military officials

    While for folk like you, me and our communities, much of this is not new, for others, particularly those within government, it is challengingly so. There’s more than a little way to go. I think there’s real opportunities to make this work, and the hearing I’m getting at APCMCOE has a real chance to advance this.

    The paper will be published on my site Wednesday afternoon Australian time. It’s already been read by several members of the SBTF and CrisisCommons community – the URL is available on their respective Google Groups.

    Please do contact me to discuss this.

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