iMMAP and Pacific Disaster Center Partner to Launch First Joint Project in Colombia

iMMAP Inc. and Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) are partnering to provide early warning and risk information for those affected by climate change. They will use their expertise in data development, information management and disaster risk analysis to support decision-making and planning.

 Washington, D.C., April 20, 2023 iMMAP Inc. is pleased to announce that it has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Pacific Disaster Center (PDC). Through this new partnership, iMMAP Inc. and PDC will combine forces to enhance their respective efforts in assisting actors whose needs in early warning and risk information are high and who face the relentless repercussions of climate-change.   

Managed by the University of Hawaii, PDC is a leading applied research center that supports government agencies, non-governmental and humanitarian organizations to increase their disaster management capacities. Through research and innovation, PDC experts have been developing innovative technologies and practices to bolster effective disaster mitigation, preparation, response, and recovery for more than 25 years. Funded in the aftermath of Hurricane Iniki which devastated the Hawaiian Islands, PDC crafts risk reduction strategies to support evidence-based decisions. Advanced analytics related to risk and stability are provided to the global community through its DisasterAWARE platform. 

Following the completion of this National Disaster Preparedness Baseline Assessment in Peru, PDC is using its DisasterAWARE platform for decision making.

PDC and iMMAP Inc. share mutual expertise in an array of skills and areas, including data development and information management tools, geospatial visualization of information, and disaster risk analysis aimed to foster sound decision-making and planning. iMMAP’s long-standing support to UN agencies and US government partners in information management and capacity building also ideally complements PDC’s ongoing partnerships with similar entities, such as the World Food Programme, World Health Organization and USAID’s Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance. In addition, both organizations regularly coordinate with OCHA to support disaster response worldwide. 

For their first collaborative effort, iMMAP Inc. and PDC plan to work starting in mid-2023 around PDC’s National Disaster Preparedness Baseline Assessment for Colombia with the systematization of a series of nation-wide datasets to permit a thorough risk analysis. iMMAP, which has worked in Colombia since 2009, will support PDC's baseline assessment which was awarded first place by the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Risk Reduction. IMMAP will also help PDC to disseminate results to the Humanitarian Country Team members at national and local levels. William Baron, iMMAP CEO, explained how the combined expertise of PDC and iMMAP Inc. would complement each other to achieve greater impact in Colombia and beyond.    

“Through years of dedication to our work in Colombia, iMMAP Inc. has implemented the use of new technologies and innovation, thereby using fewer resources, to reduce response time and develop a comprehensive understanding of the human factors that affect population movements, migration, settlement patterns and underlying vulnerabilities. By combining this expertise with PDC's risk mapping, we can reduce the impact of natural disasters and minimize the damage they cause to communities. We hope that this collaboration will pave the way for more such initiatives in the future.”William Barron, CEO of iMMAP

PDC’s Director of Global Operations Dr. Erin Hughey shared Mr. Barron’s enthusiasm for this first collaboration between the two organizations under the new MoU signed in January 2023. 

“The iMMAP team brings invaluable ground-level knowledge and critical expertise to the table derived from years of working within our partner nations. As PDC advances work with countries across Africa and Latin America to build risk knowledge and operationalize the use of risk information in key decisions, we look forward to partnering with iMMAP.”Dr. Erin Hughey, Director of Global Operations at PDC

IMMAP's social mapping in the Nueva Colombia settlement in Barranquilla, Atlanticò.

Following the launch of this first joint-effort in Colombia, iMMAP Inc. and PDC are exploring potential additional collaborations for 2023 in other areas in Latin America, such as Ecuador, but also in Africa with discussions centering on Benin, Madagascar, Ghana and Kenya.