Madsen Building (F09), Room 419
Phone: +61 2 9036 5469
Web + Blog: www.billyhaworth.com
Dr Eleanor Bruce
A/Prof Kurt Iveson
Dr Josh Whittaker (RMIT)
A/Prof Matt Duckham (University of Melbourne)
Billy’s key research interests involve using GIS and spatio-temporal analysis technologies to explore relationships between people and places. Previous work has examined graffiti policy and spatio-temporal patterns of graffiti removal in urban environments. His current research is focussed on the role of volunteered geographic information (VGI) in natural disaster risk reduction. He currently holds a Bushfire & Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre (BNHCRC) scholarship and is examining VGI for community engagement in bushfire preparation. Billy holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Applied Science, specialising in spatial information science, from the University of Sydney. In 2015 Billy was the recipient of the Faculty of Science Postgraduate Research Prize for Outstanding Academic Achievement, the International Association of Wildland Fire PhD student scholarship, and the Esri Australia Young Scholar award.
PhD: Volunteered Geographic Information, Community Engagement and Bushfire Preparation
Through various technological innovations citizens can now collect, share and map geographic information for disaster management in unprecedented ways. Volunteered geographic information refers to the widespread voluntary engagement of private citizens in the creation of geographic information, predominantly through sources such as social media, smartphones and inexpensive online mapping tools. VGI represents a shift in the ways geographic information is created, shared, used and experienced. This has important implications for various applications of geospatial data, including disaster management, where the social practice of VGI has potential to transform the traditional top-down structure of emergency management. VGI technologies enable cost-effective, rapid sharing of diverse geographic information from community members at all stages of disaster management, including prevention, preparation, response, and recovery. But VGI also presents new challenges including a lack of data quality assurance and issues surrounding data management, liability, and the digital divide. Research in this emerging area has focussed on disaster response, while largely ignoring prevention and preparedness. Preparing for disasters dramatically reduces the likelihood of negative impacts on life and property, and there is a global need for communities to engage more in disaster preparation. This research examines the potential role of VGI in fostering community engagement in bushfire preparation in Tasmania, where VGI has potential to aid in building risk awareness, community connectedness, and increased disaster resilience.
This research is associated with the BNHCRC research cluster of Resilient People, Infrastructure and Institutions, and the project, Out of uniform: building community resilience through non-traditional emergency volunteering, led by Professor John Handmer and Dr Josh Whittaker.
Peer reviewed papers
- Haworth, B. (2016). Emergency management perspectives on volunteered geographic information: Opportunities, challenges, and change. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 57: 189-198.
- Biggs, EM., Bruce, E., Boruff, B., Duncan, JMA., Horsley, J., Pauli, N., McNeill, K., Neef, A., Van Ogtrop, F., Curnow, J., Haworth, B., Duce, S. and Imanari, Y. (2015). Sustainable development and the water-energy-food nexus: a perspective on livelihoods. Environmental Science & Policy, 54: 389-397.
- Haworth, B., Bruce, E. and Middleton, P. (2015). Emerging technologies for risk reduction: Assessing the potential use of social media and VGI for increasing community engagement in bushfire preparation. The Australian Journal of Emergency Management, 30(3): 36-41.
- Haworth, B., and Bruce, E. (2015). A review of volunteered geographic information for disaster management. Geography Compass, 9(5): 237-250.
- Biggs, EM., Boruff, B., Bruce, E., Duncan, JMA., Haworth, B., Duce, S., Horsley, J., Curnow, J., Neef, A., McNeill, K., Pauli, N., Van Ogtrop, F., Imanari, Y. (2014). Environmental Livelihood Security in South-East Asia and Oceania: a nexus-livelihoods approach for spatially assessing change. IWMI White Paper, International Water Management Institute, Colombo.
- Haworth, B., Bruce, E., and Iveson, K. (2013). Spatio-temporal analysis of graffiti occurrence in an inner-city urban environment. Applied Geography, 38: 53-63.
Presentations and Conference Papers
- Haworth, B.,Whittaker, J. and Bruce, E. (accepted abstract). Using participatory mapping to harness local knowledge and increase community connectedness in bushfire preparation. AFAC/BNHCRC annual conference, ‘Mitigation, Response, Recovery: Getting the Balance Right,’ Brisbane, August 2016.
- Haworth, B. (2015). Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI) for community engagement in bushfire preparedness. BNHCRC Sustainable Volunteering annual workshop, RMIT, Melbourne, November 2015.
- Bruce, E., Sheehan, S., Haworth, B. and Blewitt, M. (2015). Geographic citizen science in marine management: opportunities and research challenges for integrating Earth Observation data and in-situ volunteer observations. Earth Observation Science 2.0 conference, Frascati, Italy, October 2015.
- Haworth, B. (2015). Three minute thesis. AFAC/BNHCRC annual conference, ‘New Directions in Emergency Management,’ Adelaide, September 2015.
- Haworth, B. (2015). Power to the people: The implications of volunteered geographic information for official emergency management (conference poster). AFAC/BNHCRC annual conference, ‘New Directions in Emergency Management,’ Adelaide, September 2015.
- Haworth, B. (2015). “Flooding Facebook” and “Tweeting up a storm”: A review of volunteered geographic information for disaster management. Seminar given at the Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh, NC. April 2015.
- Haworth, B. (2015). Engaging Communities in Disaster Risk Reduction through Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI): a case study of bushfires (wildfires) in Tasmania, Australia. AAG annual meeting, Chicago, IL. April 2015.
- Haworth, B. (2015). Three minute thesis. BNHCRC Research Advisory Forum, NSW Rural Fire Service headquarters, Sydney, April 2015.
- Haworth, B. (2014). Crowdsourcing geographic information: VGI, citizen science, and community engagement in bushfire preparation. ‘Thinking Space’ seminar series, School of Geosciences, University of Sydney, October 2014.
- Haworth, B., Bruce, E. and Whittaker, J. (2014). Non-traditional Volunteering: Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI) and bushfire preparation (conference poster), AFAC/BNHCRC annual conference, ‘After Disaster Strikes: Learning from Adversity,’ Wellington, New Zealand, September 2014.
- Haworth, B. and Bruce, E. (2014). Volunteered Geographic Information, community engagement and bushfire preparation in Tasmania: a preliminary study, Geographies of natural hazards and disasters in the Australia – Pacific region, Institute of Australian Geographers Conference, Melbourne, July 2014.
- Biggs, E., Boruff, B., Bruce, E., Duncan, J., Horsley, J., Duce, S., Haworth, B., Pauli, N., Clifton, J., McNeill, K., Neef, A., Van Ogtrop, F., Murphy, R., and Tompkins, E. (2014). Environmental livelihood security: sustainable livelihoods and the environment nexus, Sustainable Livelihoods and the Environment Nexus, Institute of Australian Geographers Conference, Melbourne, July 2014.
- Haworth, B. (2014). Social media and information communication during natural disaster events, GeoNext Location Matters Conference, Sydney, February 2014.
- Haworth, B., Bruce, E. and Iveson, K. (2011). Graffiti and urban space: a GIS approach, Encountering spatial technologies: geographic information technologies for cultural research, Institute of Australian Geographers conference, Wollongong, July 2011.
- Haworth, B. (2014). Volunteered Geographic Information, Community Engagement and Bushfire Preparation in Tasmania: Field study preliminary results. Report compiled for the Tasmania Fire Service, June 2014.