As president of the Sahana Software Foundation, I had the privilege of delivering a brief overview describing Sahana to the 2016 Global CAP Implementation Workshops held at the Asian Institute of Technology near Bangkok, Thailand. Slides are embedded below.
This conference was my first time engaging, in-person, with the disaster relief community outside the United States and I was extremely impressed. Unlike most conferences I attend in which there is an abstract “theme” with random and broad sessions, this conference had a laser-like focus on a very specific data standard called the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP). The goal of this protocol is to facilitate in the exchange of “all-hazard emergency alerts and public warnings over all kinds of networks.”
Presentations and discussion were focused on the design and implementation of this specific data standard. There were also sessions organized in which stakeholders worked together to create field-by-field recommendations for how to improve future versions of CAP. The amount of information that was shared and the effective collaborations that took place were inspiring.
We need many many more events that are focused exclusively on the design and implementation of data standards within the disaster relief and resilience community. If we can come together to create a shared language and set of data standards for our work, then information sharing will become radically easier. Easier information sharing leads to better situational awareness, more efficient resource distribution, and more positive outcomes.
I’m look forward to bringing some of the the tools and techniques I learned at this event back with me to the USA.