Do You HEAR Me? New TVEAP Film looks at Voice-enabled Technologies for Disaster Management
During the past decade, the telephone has become Asia’s most widely used communication tool. All over Asia, people call each other a great deal – both in good times and bad.
Can talking on the phone help those responding to disasters and emergencies to be better organised?
How can voice be used more efficiently in both alerting and reporting about disasters?
Where and how can computer technology make a difference in crisis management?
These questions were investigated in a recent action research project by LIRNEasia, an Asian regional think tank on information and communication technologies, or ICTs.
“It’s voice enabled technology that allows bridging the last mile communication in terms of disaster information.”
- Nuwan Waidyanatha
Senior Research Fellow, LIRNEasia
“Community resilience building will ultimately help the national capacity to face disasters.”
- Dr. Vinya Ariyaratne
General Secretary, Sarvodaya
The research was conducted in partnership with Sarvodaya, the largest development organisation in Sri Lanka, which enabled the field testing in relation to different hazards. It was carried out at Sarvodaya’s Community Disaster Management Centre in Moratuwa.
TVE Asia Pacific (TVEAP) has just produced a short film that looks at the key findings and learnings of this research, and its implications for better information management during and after disaster situations.
The research probed how voice-based reporting can fit into globally accepted standards for sharing emergency data. Field information on an unfolding disaster situation was turned into a situation report using Sahana – an expert system for managing disaster information. It works with internet technologies.
Then, a spoken message is recorded using Freedom Fone -- an interactive voice response system that works with GSM telephones.