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MCEER Bulletin, Volume 25, Number 1, Spring/Summer 2011

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Volume 25, Number 1, 2011

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9th International Workshop on Remote Sensing Includes Special Session on 2011 Tohoku, Japan Disaster

The 9th International Workshop on Remote Sensing for Disaster Response, held at Stanford University on September 15-16 2011, was one of the most successful workshops to date in this series. Over 40 participants from five countries (U.S., Japan, New Zealand, U.K. and the Netherlands) delivered 25 presentations on a broad set of topics dealing with recent worldwide earthquakes, tsunami effects, earthquake effects, hurricane effects, wildfires, damage detection methodologies, building inventory development, and new and emerging technologies for disaster response.

9th International Workshop on Remote Sensing for Disaster Response group photo

Participants from the 9th International Workshop on Remote Sensing for Disaster Response pose for a group photo.

As a result of the devastating impact of the 2011 Tohoku, Japan earthquake and tsunami, a special session was organized to learn from this event. A common conclusion from this session was that remote sensing played an important role in rapid delineation of tsunami run-up areas and in quantifying the amount of debris generated by this devastating event.

Prior to the workshop, a oneday Symposium on Remote Sensing for Disaster Response was held on September 14, 2011 at Stanford University to discuss the future directions of remote sensing technologies in rapid information extraction for disaster response. Close to 90 participants attended this symposium, including first responders, government agencies, data providers, academia, researchers, and industry. Six presentations were given focusing on NASA technologies for disaster management, commercial imagery for rapid response, navigating the transition from imagery to information, information supply chain, the operational use of remote sensing for disaster response, and a wish list for rapid disaster mappers and analysts .A panel discussion followed in which members of the audience interacted with the panel experts on a variety of topics, including availability and release of imagery, and priorities for future research.

The workshop was sponsored by the John A. Blume Earthquake Engineering Center, Stanford University, Risk Management Solutions Inc. (RMS), ImageCat Inc., U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI), MCEER, and the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center (PEER).

Proceedings can be viewed at

The 10th International Workshop on Remote Sensing for Disaster Management will be held at Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan, on September 15-16, 2012. In addition to the twoday workshop, a post-workshop study tour of the Tohoku region is planned.

For more information, contact Dr. Pooya Sarabandi, Stanford University, at