Humanitarian Mapping: a new opportunity for research and innovation

humanitarian mapping.

Together with our partners we can explore patterns of Climate Change and identify solutions for restoring ecosystems

Project context

Much of the world is not mapped, or at best has maps that do not accurately reflect what is occurring on the ground. This makes it difficult and sometimes impossible to assist when natural disasters occur or in addressing the major challenges facing communities and ecosystems. The work of Humanitarian Mapping involves the use of GIS (Geographic Information System) to to create, validate, and share maps for humanitarian purposes. 

While Humanitarian Mappers rely on real-time data captured by satellites, they can supplement this information with on the ground data including images, videos, and qualitative reports. Through a combination of GIS and in-situ data, Humanitarian Mappers can explore patterns related to Climate Change and environmental degradation as well as patterns of regeneration and restoration. By studying these patterns with community partners living and working within challenged ecosystems, we can develop more effective ecorestoration tools and practices, customizing approaches for specific environments and contexts.

Perhaps the most exciting thing about Humanitarian Mapping is that almost anyone can learn and contribute. The basic skills are easy to master. And our global partners are providing opportunities to map their respective regions, sharing their own pictures, videos, and reports climate conditions impacting their communities. Our partners are heavily invested in this work and eager to benefit from the ultimate goal which is to inform ecorestoration and regenerative practices. They are both our partners for assessment and eventual implementation.  


Project opportunities

Students will begin by learning the basics of Humanitarian Mapping while focusing on focal regions identified by our global partners. Current priorities include: Northern Uganda, Kwale Kenya, and Enugu Nigeria. Additional regions will be added as the Humanitarian Mapping work progresses.

Students will also engage with in-situ data provided by partners, helping to further develop this initiative as more students, faculty and SUNY campuses join in. Individual project portfolios will be customized based on students' availability and interests with opportunities for customization and integration with courses and programs of study.

A new Humanitarian Mapping digital badge will be available for students participating in related projects.

Questions about Humanitarian Mapping can be directed to Dr. Michael Jabot at


Project details

Timing, eligibility and other details
Length of commitment Variable
Start time Fall, Spring, Summer
Level of collaboration Variable
Benefits Digital Badge
Who is eligible Students of all backgrounds and majors invited to apply

Project mentor

Michael Jabot

Distinguished Teaching Professor

SUNY Fredonia

SUNY SDG Project Challenge

This project is for students interested in the SUNY SDG Project Challenge.

Express Interest

  1. Email ELN with letter of interest at to express your interest and get approval to work on the project. (Here are helpful tips on how to send this email)
  2. After you send your email expressing your interest, click the button to schedule a meeting to discuss the project. (Please be sure to include your letter of interest when scheduling the event)


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