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This document discusses the use and opportunities of ICTs and disruptive technologies for disaster risk reduction and management. It responds to requests from ITU Member States to identify relevant technologies and facilitate the sharing of best practices.The document finds that technological advancement and innovation are creating new opportunities for enhancing disaster resiliency and risk reduction. Developments in disruptive technologies – such as artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data – and innovations in such areas as robotics and drone technology are transforming many fields, including disaster risk reduction and management. The rapid spread of supporting digital infrastructure and devices, especially wireless broadband networks, smartphones and cloud computing, has created the foundation for the application of disruptive technologies for disaster management. Disruptive technologies can spread critical information more quickly, improve understanding of the causes of disasters, enhance early warning systems, assess damage in new ways and add to the knowledge base of the social behaviours and economic impacts after a crisis strikes. Situational awareness is improving with new tools providing the crisis community with a clearer understanding of the extent of damage and where to prioritize resources.
ITU plays an important role in using ICTs for disaster risk reduction and management, through the design of national emergency telecommunication plans, the setting up of early warning and monitoring systems and the provision of emergency telecommunications equipment when disasters strike.
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