Data Science Aid in Disaster Relief

Data science makes all of our lives easier. It coordinates the fleet of Uber cars we take to work but it could also save your life. 337 natural disasters occurred in 2013, resulting in 22,542 deaths and more than $119 billion worth of damage, according to the Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters. Using data science, we can make those numbers much smaller. A huge resource in data collection across the globe is the power of the crowd. More than a billion people carry smartphones with them every day.
When something out of the ordinary happens, the first thing many people do is take out their phone and snap a picture. Many of those pictures are then posted publicly, and many of them are geotagged with location information. That’s a wealth of data that in times of crisis can be used to help those in need. There are two main lines of thinking when it comes to disaster relief. The first centers on what we can do to prepare ourselves before a disaster strikes. Data science is already used a great deal in the realm of disaster preparedness—we can use predictive analytics to build complex weather models that track tsunamis, hurricanes, earthquakes, and so on.