Introduction / Background

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), through its
UN-SPIDER Programme (United Nations Platform for Space-based
Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response
)
together with the German Aerospace Center (DLR) are organising the
above mentioned workshop to promote the access and use of space-based
technologies and solutions for disaster management and emergency
response within relevant communities.

In its resolution 61/110 of 14 December 2006 the United Nations General
Assembly agreed to establish the “United Nations Platform for Spacebased
Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response –
UN-SPIDER”, as a programme of the United Nations Office for Outer Space
Affairs, to provide universal access to all countries and all relevant
international and regional organizations to all types of space-based
information and services relevant to disaster management.

As part of the UN-SPIDER outreach activities, four workshops are being
organized in 2009 to raise awareness within the user community of the
benefits of using space-based information and solutions, to assess its
needs and to contribute to specific activities of the programme.
Specifically, this Third International Workshop in Bonn will provide an
opportunity to bring together decision-makers and experts from both the
space technology and disaster management communities, international
scientific organizations, knowledge transfer and educational institutions,
as well as internationally active private companies, with the intention of
sharing their best practices and to bring their knowledge, products and
technologies for risk and disaster management, humanitarian aid and
emergency response.

The first and the second workshop held in Bonn were organized jointly
with DLR and with the support of the Government of Germany. The
workshop in 2007 brought together 90 participants from 39 countries, and
in 2008 120 participants from 38 countries attended.

The programme of the first workshop was centred on the activities
assigned to the UN-SPIDER Bonn office. It included plenary sessions,
during which 11 presentations were given, and discussion sessions, in
which participants were divided into four working groups. One of the main
goals of the second workshop in 2008 was to link both the space
community and the disaster management community, and to provide
results in terms of a way forward regarding the setup of an integrative
information and communication platform. In order to reach this goal the
workshop was divided into four thematic sessions as following: 1. Space
technology in support of risk and disaster management, 2. Vulnerability
and Risk Assessment, 3. Contribution of space-based technologies to
existing and proposed Early Warning Systems, 4. Disaster Medicine,
Telemedicine and Integrated Vector Management (IVM). Altogether 29
expert presentations reflected on the state-of-the-art knowledge related
to the broad range of topics of this workshop. More information on the
outcome of the workshops and the presentations made during the
workshops are available at http://www.unspider.org.