Satellites and space technology applications for disaster risk management

July 2017

Since April 2015, ADB has been implementing TA-8884-REG: Applying Space-Based Technology and Information and Communication Technology to Strengthen Disaster Resilience.


The TA is being implemented with a $2 million support from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR), and aims to establish a more information-based Disaster Risk Management system through the application of space-based technologies and information and communication technology.  


The TA has recently developed a combination of web and mobile based tools aimed to help communities and city governments in responding better to perceived risks from natural disasters. Government, community officials and local volunteers in Armenia, Bangladesh, Fiji, and the Philippines will be trained to use new state-of-the-art space-based technology and other high tech tools for disaster planning.


In Fiji, an island state in the Pacific that is prone to typhoons, storm surges, and tsunamis, mobile phone units were purchased under the TA and were issued to volunteer mappers for the field validation. Successful field validations were done at the Namotomoto, Nawaka and Saunaka Villages, center of Nadi town, and the Denarau island. About 500 buildings were mapped using the mobile phones to identify which structures are at most risk to natural disasters.


Among the lessons learned from the recent activities in Fiji are: collecting information using mobile applications is easy to understand for community people adept at using smart phones; use of mobile devices for communities raises their awareness of hazards at hand; and use of mobile applications for mapping vulnerable communities can reach areas that are not usually covered by open source platforms like Google Maps. 


An overview of the web and mobile based tools developed under the TA are illustrated in the infographics below.

Fig 1.0 Web based tool

Fig 2.0 Mobile based tool

  • Livablecities
  • Livablecities
  • LinkedIn Social Icon

ADB's Vision of Livable Cities

ADB’s vision is to transform the archetypical chaotic, polluted, inequitable cities of Asia and the Pacific into a competitive, equitable, environmentally sustainable, and climate resilient urban centers—in short, livable cities. This will require a new approach to city development, including how ADB supports that development.

Read more.


This website is a knowledge sharing platform of the ADB Urban Sector Group. The views expressed in this website are the views of the respective author/s and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ADB, or its Board of Governors, or the governments they represent. ADB does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included in this website and accepts no responsibility for any consequence of their use. Terminology used may not necessarily be consistent with ADB official terms and designations.

© 2021 Asian Development Bank

  • Twitter Social Icon
  • YouTube Social  Icon