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Disaster Response use-cases

I'm based in Australia, where I've had friends + family directly affected by the 2019-2020 bushfires.

Being a GSD kind of person and CoFounder of Assemblient (an AU Atlassian Solution Partner), I've used the passion of wanting better outcomes for communities to fuel my intent to make a difference on 4 fronts, each of which has involved the use of Atlassian products in some way, with different response teams - some of which have included Atlassian staff. Thought I'd take the time to briefly write about it and see who else uses the tools in disaster response scenarios, or trigger further discussion:

1. Accommodation support: evacuees or fire affected families who've lost homes - simple JIRA Service Desk request type for evacuees and a workflow for matching them with accommodation host offers;

2. Crisis Response resources, requests, volunteering: agencies + NGOs offer listings as a public URL, which we trawl and aggregate into Crisis App through a curation process, geolocating and tagging with topic; requests are also captured, using same topic taxonomy, with JSD used for managing request types, curation and matching, with the JSD portal configured for Listing offers+Updates, volunteer EOIs, support tickets (has been a fascinating crowdsourcing project, leveraging US team members who crowdsourced large scale responses to US Hurricanes);

3. Community recovery: community volunteers need a way of managing inbound requests to get a handle on numbers of local people impacted and the types of impacts, so a simple JSD request type handles this and is iterated for data-types, using Labels as an evolving taxonomy for categorisation. We've setup a Request type for Tool offers/requests and Tool libraries for initial recovery focus, supporting farmers and tradies who've lost the tools they need to earn a living, but will expand on these over time. Patterns like this help put numbers and a foundation for needs analysis liaison with formal Govt, NGO agencies as they reach affected areas.

4. Rolling hackathon: there were edge-cases emerging from Initiatives 1-3 which we knew could be tackled by volunteers or teams wanting to lean-in, so I've used Trello, JSD + Confluence to help deliver AusFireHack.info which lists ongoing challenges we ask people to dig into and help us deliver a response to.

AusFireHack_-_AusFireHack_-_homepage.png

Each of these have drawn on previous work setting up a large scale POC for emergency response handling by agencies that integrated SAP with JIRA, JSD, ConfluenceKB, call-centers and geospatial integrations, but I've inverted the model to be citizen-centric and a bit more micro-service oriented, knowing communities will need effective, simple resources to support their recovery journey. I've done a recap of the work in a briefing to VentureCafe Sydney to see how we might progress some of these further.

Interested in hearing from others who are part of the international disaster recovery community or have relevant deployment scenarios they'd like to share + discuss. We're doing a rolling lessons-learnt exercise through this, which I'll likely distill into a quick tips post as we move beyond crisis response into longer term recovery phases.

4 comments

Thank you for sharing this @Brian_Hill ❤

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Tim_Keyes Atlassian Team Feb 01, 2020

Hi @Brian_Hill

Thank you for sharing.  It is really exciting to see additional applications of software being used to do good.  A lot of the agencies responding to disasters utilize different tools to coordinate and manage data.  Having a shared platform that can be rapidly implemented to facilitate organization and collaboration is awesome!

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Very poignant article, @Brian_Hill . Sorry to hear about the impact of the bushfires on you friends and family. Improving disaster response for your community is a truly noble cause.

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