Citizen science platform seeks to collect community perception of forest fires

Citizen science platform seeks to collect community perception of forest fires

With the participation of the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering Sciences of the Austral University of Chile, Dr. Enrique Suárez; the Prodean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Carmen Gloria Muñoz; representatives of public services, academics and students, the launch of the “Citizen Platform for Community Perception of Fires”within the framework of project ID22110072 FONDEF IDeA – Climate Change.

The initiative seeks to consolidate the research and development effort carried out within the framework of the Center for Fire and Resilience of Socioecosystems (Fireses), research nucleus of the Austral University of Chileand is led by academics Dr. Cristian Olivares-Rodríguez (from the Informatics Institute) as Director and the Dr. Rodolfo Mardones (Institute of Psychological Studies) as Alternate Director.

As indicated by the Dr. Cristian Olivares-Rodriguezthe purpose of the proposal is to develop and evaluate a monitoring model of the community perception of forest fire management through a gamified platform of decentralized and territorial citizen science, considering the National Forestry Corporation (CONAF) as relevant actors in its execution. ), the National Emergency Office (ONEMI), the Municipality of Valdivia and the Municipality of Paillaco.

“Climate change is affecting all territories and, in particular, our country is experiencing increasingly frequent episodes of large fires, so it is important to understand the perception of communities regarding them. In this way, the project comes to deliver a form and a pedagogical and technological strategy to be able to capture these perceptions in a systematic and orderly manner ”, he explained.

For his part, the Alternate Director of the project, Dr. Rodolfo Mardonesspecified that the development stages of the initiative are related in the first instance to the implementation of the model, evaluating the participation to know the community perception, developing an analytical table, evaluating the skills and understanding and, finally, transferring the model gamified to the ordering body, in this case CONAF.

“For us it is relevant to have the community perception and better understand how the communities are understanding the fires and how that contributes to being able to face these emergencies,” said the academic.

On the occasion, the CONAF professional and president of the Steering Committee of project ID22110072 FONDEF IDeA – Climate Change, Marcelo del Valle, stated that “we have the firm conviction that the academy has to be absolutely linked with the public world, because we are the ones who are linked absolutely every day with the community. We want to be successful in this (the project), since the perception of forest fires is very important to us and this is one more tool that we are going to have to focus on the form and prevention mechanisms, so this favors us all, It favors a country, a region and we are very happy to be part of it”.

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The activity was attended by Dr. Enrique Suárez, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering Scienceswho stated that he was “very happy with the project, with the teachers who are involved and with the institutions that accompany us as associated entities, for which I view this work with great eyes, which is also associated with a topic that is extremely important and that has a very deep citizen look”.

The launch was also attended by Prodean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Carmen Gloria Muñozwho highlighted the value of the initiative that -he said- seeks to “put technical capacity at the service of such a contingent problem, in order to attend to a phenomenon with global characteristics and where the answers are not only here, but in dialogue with the communities, with the people and those who deal with the problem closely, and where we from the academy seek to be a means and a contribution to the search for solutions”.

The project also includes the participation as co-investigators of the Dr. Paula Villagra Y Dr. Susana Paula the Institute of Environmental and Evolutionary Sciences; the Dr Mauro Gonzalez the Institute of Conservation, Biodiversity and Territory; the Dr. Daniela Zúñiga from the Institute of Psychological Studies; and the Dr. Luis Carcamo of the Institute of Social Communication, who presented the talk «Citizen science and educommunication: New/old strategies to contribute in the territories«.

The conference, which took place in the 14K Center of the Miraflores Campus, was also attended by Marcelo del Vallehead of CONAF Fire Control; omar gonzalezsupport professional from ONEMI Los Ríos; Miguel Carrasco, mayor of the Illustrious Municipality of Paillaco; Y claudio laraDirector of Risk and Disaster Management of the Illustrious Municipality of Valdivia, among other guests.

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Written by Editor TLN

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