Date of Award
Master of Science
People around the world have become more connected thanks to the rise of social technology. As a result, that same technology has allowed us to witness the amount of violence and disastrous events that people around the world are experiencing. Civilians in Syria are constantly caught between rebel forces and the Syrian government's army with no way of knowing where the next attack will be. People in Colorado had to wait for news updates on the wildfires of 2012 to make critical decisions on whether to evacuate or stay in their homes. A man in Mexico had all his personal belongings stolen at gunpoint when he came across a cartel-enforced blockade on his way to the grocery store. All these situations could have been avoided if those people had information about dangerous locations right away to help them make decisions. Civilians themselves who have just experienced the danger have valuable information that they can share to help other people avoid the same situation.
This thesis presents a tool called Urban Forecast that can help citizens avoid dangerous locations and events by posting it on a map in the application and having it notify every other user around that area. Initial results suggest that Urban Forecast is effective at helping people avoid dangerous situations. Future designs based on results are also presented. The focus of this thesis is not entirely on the technology, but on the impact that it has on society in a hostile environment.
Camou, Jose, "Urban forecast: An analysis of a crowdsourced mobile app for crisis management" (2013). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 13574.