Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has the great advantage that it is already a heavy user of open-source software tools; hence, their understanding of the benefits of open data in the geospatial context is significant.
Understanding Risks in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Historical data indicates that in the Eastern Caribbean, the regional probability of a hurricane in any given year is about 18%, underscoring the need for disaster risk reduction and emergency response.
Many of the small Eastern Caribbean country states like Saint Vincent and the Grenadines are now largely committed to the development, implementation and maintenance of open source geospatial information platforms to enable local and regional collaboration, data sharing to support evidence-based disaster risk decision-making.
Hurricane Tomas took a heavy toll on the country’s socio-economic development, with significant damage to schools and community centers that are part of the national network of emergency shelters. Critical roads were cut by landslides or by the flooding of major rivers.
During and after the hurricane, community residents in certain areas were isolated and shelter facilities were damaged or inaccessible for several days. As a consequence, the impact of the hurricane was even more severe on the most vulnerable groups.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has the great advantage that it is already a heavy user of open-source software tools; hence, their understanding of the benefits of open data in the geospatial context is significant. The GeoNode platform used there is primarily beneficial by the Ministry of Physical Planning and other government agencies.