In view of the current situation, as well as the important vulnerabilities that exist in this part of the world, it was important that a first country for this project be selected among the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. After considering different parameters such as the level of income, the current situation in the country as well as other supporting factors it has finally been decided to work on Morocco.

At the same time, the passage of typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda over the Philippines in November 2013 has highlighted several information/data availability and access issues that could be addressed through the implementation of the SIIEM principles. Due to the positive impact that this project could have, the knowledge that could then be transferred from the Philippines to Morocco as well as the connections already established with several governmental and non-governmental institutions in the country, The Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative (AGEDI) kindly accepted for SIIEM to also include the Philippines during this first year of implementation.

Working in close collaboration with the government, and other key stakeholders, the SIIEM project  the following activities have been defined at the beginning of the project implementation:

1. Implementation of the SIIEM framework in Morocco:

1.1 Integration of the SIIEM principle in the National Strategy for Disaster Risk Management currently under development;

1.2 Joint need assessment with UN SPIDER to identify potential information management/infrastructure gaps to support emergency management and Disaster Risk Reduction;

1.3 Based on the results of the joint assessment, implementation of selected capacity building activities aiming at making the necessary compatible, up-to-date and complete data available and accessible for the different phases of the emergency cycle.

2. Implementation of the SIIEM framework in the Philippines:

2.1 Identification of the major challenges encountered by the governmental entities and the international community involved in the response and recovery to typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan when it comes to availability, accessibility and standardization of geospatial data and population statistics;

2.2 Technical workshop and capacity building activities to address as many of the identified challenges and gaps towards the implementation of the SIIEM principles;

3. Analysis of the maps produced during the response to typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan in the Philippines:

3.1 Identification of all the actors who have been producing maps related to typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan and collection/storage of these maps;

3.2. Categorization of these maps in order to identify, among other things: potential overlap; data source and mention of this source; Geo-spatial data issues (i.e use of non-authoritative versus authoritative data, different datasets to present the same information creating confusion,…); source of financing for the production of the map;

3.3 Recommendations aiming at: rationalizing the production of maps during a crisis; ensuring the use of authoritative data sources; advocating for part of the resources provided by donors to be used for strengthening information system in countries in order to have access to better data for the production of more relevant maps for decision making.

The above mentioned activities for are be possible thanks to the seed funding kindly provided by AGEDI. The table here presents how this funding will be used.

Activity In country activities/travel/advocacy Salaries
Project coordination and advocacy $3,000 $25,000
Morocco (implementation of the SIIEM framework) $19,000 $17,500
Philippines (implementation of the SIIEM framework) $14,945 $22,500
Philippines (maps analysis) $6,855 $30,000
2014 EOE summit $11,200
Total $55,000 $95,000
Grand total $150,000

Beyond this first phase of the project, additional funds will have to be leveraged in order to be able continuing implementing the SIIEM principles in other countries as well as strengthening the work done in the first two countries.

While the precise budget for these new activities will remain to be defined depending on the interest shown by other countries it is expected that a minimum of $150,000 will be necessary per year in order to sustain the continuity of the SIIEM project.