World Bank, Google, collaborate on maps

INTERNET

|
Image: By Google maps
World Bank, Google, collaborate on maps

The World Bank and Google announced an agreement aimed at improving the ability of developing countries to access a web-based community mapping tool and data to help better monitor public services, and improve disaster and humanitarian response efforts.

In a statement, World Bank said most developing countries do not have basic local data about where schools, hospitals, or water points are located, and the data they do have is often out of date or incorrect. One way to collect this information is to ask citizens directly, and crowdsource the locations of public infrastructure.

Under this agreement, Google will provide the World Bank and its partner organizations - including governments and UN agencies - with access to Google Map Maker underlying geospatial data that includes detailed maps of more than 150 countries.

Through this tool, citizens are able to directly participate in the creation of maps by contributing their local knowledge, and those additions are then reflected on Google Maps and Google Earth. These maps include locations like schools, hospitals, roads and water points that are critical for relief workers to know about in times of crisis, and will help NGOs, researchers, and individual citizens to more effectively identify areas that might be in need of assistance.

Crowdsourced mapping platforms have the potential to move beyond mapping individual projects, as in the World Bank Mapping for Results Initiative, which has mapped 2,500 projects in more than 30,000 geographic locations in all 143 partner countries. By combining the locations of all social infrastructure and citizens’ feedback, all development partners could better track the contribution they are making towards improving local public services and disaster preparedness in developing countries.

“A global community of Google users have been volunteering their time to improve maps, making them more comprehensive and ensuring that they remain accurate as the world around them changes. This is particularly important in vulnerable locations and for disaster preparedness and recovery as it helps citizens and governments to better prepare emergency response plans and act effectively when a crisis hits," said Shona Brown, Senior Vice President, Google.org.

This agreement also builds on previous joint mapping efforts. In April 2011, more than 60 members of the Southern Sudanese Diaspora joined a joint event to help map schools, hospitals and other social infrastructure in this new country.

“The remarkable success of the South Sudan ‘Mapathon,’ and our new collaboration with Google Map Maker represents an unprecedented opportunity to harness one of the most sophisticated mapping technologies. Being able to crowdsource data of schools and hospitals will create both transparency and accountability for citizens,” said Sanjay Pradhan, Vice-President of the World Bank Institute.

Initial World Bank country offices that plan to pilot the Map Maker agreement include Kenya, South Sudan, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Ghana, Zambia, Nigeria, DRC, Moldova, Mozambique, Nepal, and Haiti. These countries are where governments have a strong interest in supporting the use of technology and data for decision-making and community monitoring, and in encouraging projects that support government and citizen engagement in geospatial mapping.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

Search News

comments powered by Disqus

MORE INTERNET NEWS

Tigo, JI and GES equip teachers on child online protection initiative

Tigo, in partnership with J Initiative (JI), a youth focused non-governmental organisation in Ghana, have committed to protecting children online through policy advocacy, awareness creation, public education and community engagement initiatives. Read More

SEACOM adds peering points in Europe and Africa

SEACOM has added the Deutscher Commercial Internet Exchange (DE-CIX) in Marseille and France Internet Exchange (FranceIX) in Paris to the growing list of European Internet exchange points at which it peers.  Read More

Adapting and adopting the new digital workplace

Anton Jacobsz The explosion of smartphones, tablets and Internet of Things (IoT) devices is transforming the way we communicate, consume services, and manage our personal lives.  Read More

Cisco: MEA to have world’s highest IP traffic growth

Mike Weston, Vice President, Cisco Middle East The MEA region will see a 6-fold growth in IP traffic - the highest growth rate in the world (CAGR of 41%) from 2015–2020, says Cisco. Read More

Ericsson launches 5G Plug-Ins to equip today’s networks for 5G

New Ericsson 5G Plug-Ins address diverse 5G use cases from mobile HD video, driverless buses and haptic feedback-enabled drones to fiber-equivalent residential wireless access. Read More

US judge rules DCA claims deficient

A US court has this week granted the ZA Central Registry's (ZACR's) motion to dismiss all claims against it by DotConnectAfrica Trust (DCA).  Read More

Private sector should push connectivity

Botswana’s Minister of Transport and Communication, Tshenolo Mabeo, has urged Africa to look at broadband seriously. Read More

IHS: over 8 Billion connected devices globally

A new IHS report says there are 8 billion connected devices globally, equating to four devices per household. Read More

Content at the speed of your imagination

Mellanox Technologies says evolution in the media and entertainment industry requires a higher resolution and drives the need for networking technologies that can stream more bits per second in real-time. Read More

Brown seeks stronger, better internet for Africa

AfNOG convenor Dr Nii Quaynor, Biztechafrica’s John Churu and ISOC’s Kathy Brown The Internet is everything, the Chief Executive Officer for the international internet body Internet Society (ISOC), Kathy Brown, has told the Africa Internet Summit now underway in Gaborone.  Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage EnterpriseSAP AfricaTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4AfrikaNetworks UnlimitedArbor NetworksEricssonTigo Ghana

FEATURED STORY

Government should encourage youths in ICT earlyGovernment should encourage youths in ICT early

Youths should be given more encouragement to develop their ICT skills, an 11-year-old app developer told Kokumo Goodie.

IN DEPTH

IBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South AfricaIBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South Africa

IBM is opening a new IBM Cloud Data Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The new cloud center is the result of a close collaboration with Gijima and Vodacom and is designed to support cloud adoption and customer demand across the continent.  

COMPANY NEWS

Tigo, JI and GES equip teachers on child online protection initiative

Tigo, in partnership with J Initiative (JI), a youth focused non-governmental organisation in Ghana, have committed to protecting children online through policy advocacy, awareness creation, public education ...