Beth Simone Noveck in Forbes: A City Crowdsources Disaster Response Expertise

Andrew Young — October 02, 2015

In Forbes, Network chair Beth Simone Noveck describes The Governance Lab’s collaboration with the Secretary General for Planning and Open Government of Quito, Ecuador to prepare for the seemingly inevitable, and potentially devastating, eruption of volcano Cotopaxi.

“City Officials have to plan for large-scale evacuation. Yet there are those with expertise in behavioral insights — so-called ‘nudges’ — who have proven advice to share about how to communicate to avoid mass panic. Quito has to identify shelter for thousands. There are those with experience deploying emergency shelters. Clean air will be an issue. Yet there are innovators who have experience deploying air quality sensors to thousands and engaging citizens in the agile process of measuring air quality. There are first responders far and wide who have lived through and learned from other disasters and who have innovative ideas, especially about how to use technology, to respond more effectively in crisis and the willingness to share what they know.

With too much to do and not enough time to prepare, the City of Quito, Ecuador wants to use the Internet to crowdsource expertise from around the world.

There are a dozen online sessions planned to bring the world’s know how, skills and experience to bear to help Quito. All sessions are 11-12:30 EST. They will be in English and be hosted by the Secretary General for Planning and Open Government of Quito and The Governance Lab.”

The session schedule is as follows:

  • Coordination of Communication – Thursday, October 1
  • Evacuation Planning – Monday, October 5
  • Cost Effective Human and Animal Shelters – Thursday, October 8
  • Citizen Sensing and Citizen Science – Monday, October 12
  • Protection of Vulnerable Populations – Thursday, October 15
  • Construction of a Skills-Based Expert Network – Monday, October 19
  • Continuity of Communications Systems – Thursday, October 22
  • Air and Water Quality and Sanitation - Monday, October 26
  • Food Safety and Cold-Chain Supply Management – Thursday, October 29
  • Access to Health Services – Monday, November 2
  • School Alternatives During a Disaster – Thursday, November 5
  • Innovative Financing for Redevelopment – Monday, November 9

Read more here.