Seton Hall University Libraries is excited to announce that students can now join Humanitarian Mapathons—coordinated mapping events with a humanitarian purpose, such as the mapping of areas that are highly subject to natural disasters—as another community service opportunity at Seton Hall.
With an OpenStreetMap and a Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team account (HOT), students will be able to volunteer in humanitarian mapping activities along with a group leader. Group leaders will be able to select regions of the world that lack mapping data and coordinate so that students can collaborate virtually for map completion. Additionally, students will be able to check on their individual contributions by accessing the “My Contributions” tab in their personal accounts.
On March 5th, the Diplomacy Leadership Cohort participated in the first SHU humanitarian mapping session. Lauren Diawatan, a Diplomacy undergraduate student, joined the session and later said that humanitarian mapping helped her make a difference. She also noted that she never realized before “how online mapping could make an impact on directing resources and assistance.”
Besides its humanitarian purpose, humanitarian mapping also has the added benefit of enhancing students’ digital literacy, which makes this service opportunity a perfect fit for classes that seek to discuss the ethical, economic, or legal issues surrounding open-source data. As explained in Bloomberg, the access to geospatial data before OpenStreetMap was difficult and significantly limited to government agencies, however, nowadays, there is already more than five million registered users that can contribute to mapping several parts of the world.
Faculty and students who are interested in running or participating in a Mapathon can reach out to Lisa DeLuca at firstname.lastname@example.org with inquiries or requests.
Data Services Group
University Libraries launched its Data Services Group in Fall 2019. Librarians and a Data Support Specialist are available to provide training in data management, specific tools like Stata, SPSS and R, Survey Research Methods for Qualtrics and Data Management for Seton Hall University students, faculty, staff, and administrators. For further information, please view the Data Services website. Part of the Data Service mission is to provide access to data sources including ICPSR.