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The BDEM researchers at the European Climate Change Adaptation conference

Dr. Minsung Hong presenting the BDEM research

Dr. Minsung Hong presenting the BDEM research

Dr. Minsung Hong and Professor Rajendra Akerkar (Western Norway Research Institute) participated in the 4th European Climate Change Adaptation conference at Lisbon from 28-31 May 2019. The biennial European Climate Change Adaptation conference is convened by international and European projects on behalf of the European Commission.

Dr. Hong presented ongoing research, in the Big Data Research Group, entitled "Improving Resilience to Extreme Events" at the conference. The research addresses the gap in knowledge that impedes a scalable and versatile emergency data integration and proposes the state-of-the-art technology in the field to a new level through enhanced techniques that bring together machine learning, big data analytics and semantic technologies. This work elaborates our experience in enhancing situational awareness in order to support decision making during extreme climate events by capitalizing on the integration and aggregated analysis of mobility, meteorological, historical, forecasting data, as well as of a multitude of pertinent multimedia data inputs.

Interaction and collaboration with the disaster risk reduction (DRR) community is a critical element in improving climate change adaptation (CCA), as the communities share similar goals and activities. This is important in relation to the goals and targets of three major international agreements: Sendai Framework for DRR and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Just out a new research article by the BDEM researcher team

A new research paper entitled “A Framework to Integrate Social Media and Authoritative Data for Disaster Relief Detection and Distribution Optimization“ has been published in the International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction. In this paper, the BDEM researchers propose an interdisciplinary approach to (natural) disaster relief management. Our framework combines dynamic and static databases, which consist of social media and authoritative data of an afflicted region, respectively, to model rescue demand during a disaster situation. Using Global Particle Swarm Optimization and Mixed-Integer Linear Programming, we then determine the optimal amount and locations of temporal rescue centers. Furthermore, our disaster relief system identifies an efficient distribution of supplies between hospitals and rescue centers and rescue demand points. By leveraging the temporal dimension of the social media data, our framework manages to iteratively optimize the disaster relief distribution.

It is a joint work of Timothy Schempp (CICS, San Diego State University), Haoran Zhang (The University of Tokyo), Alexander Schmidt (Uni Hohenheim), Minsung Hong and Rajendra Akerkar (Vestlandsforsking).

Full article can be found at the journal website.

The BDEM researchers at the ICT-DM2018 conference in Japan

Dr. Minsung Hong (Western Norway Research Institute) and Dr. Haoran Zhang (the University of Tokyo) participated in the 5th International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies for Disaster Management (ICT-DM 2018) in Sendai, Japan, in 4-7 December, 2018 to disseminate results of the BDEM project. They have presented one paper and poster at the conference.

An Integrated Crowdsourced Framework for Disaster Relief Distribution

Timothy Schempp, Haoran Zhang, Minsung Hong, Alexander Schmidt and Rajendra Akerkar

This paper outlines our ongoing efforts at building an effective disaster relief system utilizing real-time, crowdsourced responses to disaster events. This system integrates three components: social media analysis, rescue demand prediction, and relief distribution optimization. We introduce the conceptual disaster relief system, database structure, and its integrated components. Finally, a summarization of the current research challenges we expect to address in the future is provided.

Dr. Haoran Zhang (the University of Tokyo) presenting a paper at the ICT-DM2018.

Dr. Haoran Zhang (the University of Tokyo) presenting a paper at the ICT-DM2018.

Role of Semantics in Analysing and Processing of Big Emergency Data

Minsung Hong and Rajendra Akerkar

This poster paper outlines an ongoing research that aims to incorporate semantically enabled Big Data processing for emergency response . The ultimate aim is to create an integrated platform to support prediction, early alerts, transmission and routing of the emergency data, aggregated analysis of multimodal data and coordination between emergency stakeholders (e.g. first responders, the authorities, volunteers). The modelling and computing challenges associated with such platform can be organised in terms of the 5 Vs of Big Data, which provides a means to organise our research efforts in addressing Big Data challenges using semantics.

The conference also provided the opportunity to discuss upcoming research themes in data-driven emergency management with the BDEM project members in Japan, in particular, Professor Ji (National Institute of Informatics, Japan) and with other prominent international researchers who attended the conference.

WNRI researcher's visit to the University of Tokyo

In order to discuss ongoing research cooperation and further research direction, Dr. Minsung Hong (researcher at the Western Norway Research Institute) had meeting with the BDEM partner research group in Tokyo on December 3rd, 2018. The research group at Intelligent Perception and Urban Computing Laboratory of the University of Tokyo is headed by Dr. Xuan Song.

Dr. Minsung Hong (WNRI) presenting research at Intelligent Perception and Urban Computing Laboratory, Japan.

Dr. Minsung Hong (WNRI) presenting research at Intelligent Perception and Urban Computing Laboratory, Japan.

In this meeting research students and postdocs at the University of Tokyo presented and shared their work. Moreover, Minsung presented the basic idea of a victim detection technology platform as well as preliminary results from joint research on a framework that efficiently integrates victim detection technologies considering sensing, communication and computing issues. The research aims to achieve a significant time reduction related to Victim Search and Rescue phase by providing wide-area situational awareness solutions for improved detection and localization of trapped victim.

They also discussed student-staff exchange visits to Norway.

Workshop on Big Data in Emergency Management (BDEM 2018)

Two-day Workshop on Big Data for Emergency Management (BDEM 2018) commenced from 22nd October 2018 at Veslandsforsking, Sogndal (Norway). In next two days the BDEM project researchers, practitioners and students discussed on emergency management analytics open issues and provide interesting insights for future actions in the hazard response. Main aim of the BDEM 2018 is to give answers to how to address challenges of current and future emergency management, and how analytics and intelligence can support an enhanced emergency management in the future. Both research and educational aspect were discussed by the workshop participants. The workshop was organised by the BDEM project.

Vestlandsforsking Director, Dr. Merete Lunde, inaugurated the workshop and expressed commitment to pursue effective research and education collaboration through the BDEM. The BDEM project coordinator, Prof. Rajendra Akerkar, described ongoing activities of the project and achievements in past one and half year. He further narrated the BDEM approach to share best practices and, to build and strengthen research - training cooperation among partners in big data and emergency management.

On 22nd October, Kåre Harald Drager (President, TIEMS) delivered first keynote address on Big Data potential for Emergency Management. He described various emergencies and it impact on society and importance of involving first responders in research and education.

In different sessions, four BDEM partners presented their ongoing research work. Professor André Skupin of CICS (San Diego State University) presented with overview of first comprehensive scientometric survey of Big Data and Emergency Management. Dr. Aron Culotta (Illinois Institute of Technology) delivered his motivating talk on Text Analysis. In the afternoon session, Dr. Hemant Purohit (George Mason University) delivered his splendid research talk on "Mining Big Social Data for EM Services". Finally, Vestandsforsking's Big data Research Group member, Dr. Minsung Hong gave an intriguing presentation on "Victim Detection Using Advance Technologies".

On October 23, chief of Emergency Services at the Bergen Municipality, Ivar Lunde, delivered second keynote address on Risk Management Using Case of the UCI Road World Championships were held in 2017 in Bergen, Norway.  He was the Project Manager for the host city of Bergen´s preparations for the UCI Road World Championships 2017 within Civil Protection and Emergency Preparedness. In the following sessions Dr. Vimala Nunavath of University of Bergen presented the BDEM course structure and course contents. Finally, Dr. Fan ZiPei of the University of Tokyo gave his research talk on Predicting Citywide human mobility during disaster situation.

The students attending BDEM course at University of Bergen also participated in the workshop. They enjoyed stimulating discussions with international partners on the subject and future research opportunities in the domain.