City Research Online

Visual Analytical Approaches to Evaluate Uncertainty and Bias in Crowdsourced Crisis Information

Dillingham, I. (2012). Visual Analytical Approaches to Evaluate Uncertainty and Bias in Crowdsourced Crisis Information (MPhil to PhD transfer). London, UK: City University London.


Increasing numbers of people are using social media to exchange information during crisis and conflict events. On the one hand, the humanitarian community is reluctant to use this information in the response effort as it fears the cost of untrustworthy and inaccurate information. On the other, the volunteer and technical communities have attempted to resolve this impasse by crowdsourcing crisis information; for example, by asking volunteers to ascertain whether a crisis report is trustworthy and accurate. Trust and accuracy are two characteristics of uncertainty: The fact that each is likely to have spatial, temporal and thematic aspects is supported by research, which suggests that geography characterises crisis information. Consequently, a research programme grounded in geographic information science, (geo)visualization and (geo)visual analytics is presented that seeks to evaluate the degree to which uncertainty and bias (systematic variation) are found in crowdsourced crisis information; and seeks to provide heuristics to help manage these factors. This programme consists of a methodology for undertaking interactive, analysis-guided software development that is informed by action research, scenario-based design and Munzner's model of visualization validation; and a prototype software application that combines interactive visual representations with spatial statistical functions to explore two datasets of crowdsourced crisis information. Following a review of the literature and a description of the data, the methodology and its implementation are placed within an appropriate work plan. Three supporting publications are included, as well as supporting statements regarding the author's skills and engagement with the academic community.

Publication Type: Report
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GA Mathematical geography. Cartography
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > ZA Information resources > ZA4050 Electronic information resources
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Computer Science > giCentre
Download (899kB) | Preview
Download (735kB) | Preview



Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login