State of the Use of Mobile Technologies for Disaster Preparedness in South East Asia

This project is conducted in response to Global Disaster Preparedness Center’s (GDPC) initiative of developing flood hazard preparedness mobile apps in the four target countries (Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, and Vietnam).

In particular, this project aims to accomplish the following objectives:
1. Establish effective ways of using mobile technologies to raise public awareness, especially reaching vulnerable population groups, about disaster risks and preparedness, both in terms of the delivery mechanisms and the content of the messages;
2. Identify mechanisms of how to effectively incorporate mobile technologies in disseminating early warnings of impending danger, especially to vulnerable groups, both in terms of the delivery and the content of the messages;
3. Provide solutions on how to use mobile technologies to build an integrated and open-access system which allows the public, especially the vulnerable groups, to engage in protective behaviors such as obtaining information about location and availability of preparedness services;
4. Develop community-specific and country-specific parameters in designing and implementing mobile-enabled awareness and preparedness programs;
5. Inform the feasible approaches and strategies for the humanitarian sector to develop and leverage the flood hazard preparedness apps in Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

Incorporating different dimensions of vulnerability based on geographical and demographic variations, this study selected two vulnerable population groups for data collection: individuals living in the relatively remote rural areas and individuals living in the highly populated urban areas. A multi-country survey was conducted with a purposive sample of approximately 200 people from each type of vulnerable groups in each of the target countries (see Table 1 for details). The results identified the current state of mobile technology use and information behaviors related to disaster preparedness in these four countries.

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