news5 marzo 2010

Euromed seminar on territorial information systems, March 9-12


The Euro-Mediterranean programme for reduction, prevention and management of natural and technological disasters organized a seminar on geographical information systems for the Civil Protection in Rome from March 9 to 12, in order to share methods and tools for managing risk information.

The seminar will be carried out in the Italian Civil Protection Department Main Building in Rome with 26 experts from 14 Euromed Mediterranean and Balkan countries and will focus on info management disaster risk.

The GIS – Geographical Information Systems – that assembles cartography and database technology, besides memorizing and making available all data and information on geographical places, will be the centre of the meeting. Such system allows operators to build a ‘risk atlas’, thanks to the extraction and analysis of thematic maps.

At the end of the day, the experts will be able to use the SIT in order to evaluate disasters, possibilities and impact on a given population. The system allows also to evaluate where damages can be heavier and to allocate the most suitable tools for high risk disaster areas.

The seminar will be introduced by Agostino Miozzo, International and Institutional Relations Director of the Italian Department, with a speech on the Italian experience on risk information management.

The Euromed Programme – financed by the European Union and run by a consortium coordinated by the Italian Civil Protection Department – was born in 1996 on Italy and Egypt joint initiative, in order to refine disaster exposition knowledge and harmonize Civil Protection systems of Mediterranean countries.

The first phase, started in 1999 and ended in 2004, went through different stages such as training, education and exchange of experts and technical assistance. The second phase, under French management, ended in 2008.

The third phase, still running, is managed by four countries – Italy, France, Egypt and Algeria – along with the United Nations. Started in 2009, with the Euromed PPRD South Programme – Prevention and Response to Natural and Man Made Disasters – focuses on consolidating the acquired experience and on developing a Civil Protection culture based on disaster prevention rather than response.