Fragile States Use Geospatial Data and Maps to Better Manage Natural Resources
The g7+ countries (a voluntary grouping of 20 states affected by fragility) have recognized that one of the first step towards addressing the challenges identified in natural resource management and sustaining development pathways is to have sufficient, reliable and accessible information on the location of extractive resources, the main concession boundaries and licensees, the production volumes and the relationship to other socio-economic and population dynamics.
Many of the g7+ countries boast some of the world’s most abundant reserves of natural resources, which if managed strategically and sustainably have the potential to accelerate growth and development—and if managed poorly, have the potential to undermine that stability.
Yet, most of these countries that are affected by crisis and conflict are not reaping the benefits of the data revolution nor generating critical data.
In partnership with The World Bank and United Nations Environment Program, the G7+ has launched a new web mapping platform to visualize the information related to extractives. It is a first step in helping the G7+ as a community understand its natural resource profile, how it has been changing over time, and understand its interaction with other social, economic, and political conditions, including the interrelationships between natural resource management and conflict. The web mapping platform also shows the relationship of population density to extractive areas and concessions, helping communicate the implications of resource extraction activities on already sensitive social and political conditions.
The new mapping platform is one of many tools that will help G7+ countries prioritize challenges, better understand trends, and establish a dialogue among themselves and partners so they can share experiences and seek common solutions.
The Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals also offer a major opportunity for generating new data sets and using them effectively with innovative, data-driven tools.
The G7+ platform integrates the Global Population of the World data provided by the NASA Socio-Economic Data Applications Center that is operated by the Center for International Earth Science Information Network at the Earth Institute.