NPS Social Media Event

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					          Joint Interagency Field Experiment (JIFX) 14-1 VIRTUAL Event:
  Using Social Media for Enhanced Situational Awareness and Decision Support
                                         19-20 November 2013

High-impact and high-visibility disasters have revealed the proliferation and widespread use of mobile
devices, social media, photos, videos, and other sensory data and channels as information sources. This
can be helpful in planning for, responding to, and recovering from disasters and emergencies. The
amount and speed of available information, however, in addition to a lack in ability to identify,
authenticate, coordinate, aggregate, and contextualize, leaves data and information often unused and
un-actionable.

Government agencies and response partners are responsible for identification of specific, pre-existing
information requirements. These information requirements are often satisfied through traditional
channels and methods. Social media, if explored strategically and in relation to the mission-specific pre-
existing information requirements, or “essential elements of information”, may serve as an additional
means to satisfy these requirements, providing actionable, contextualized information in real-time to
both enhance existing methods, and for verification to and from the field.

EVENT FOCUS. In order to facilitate this experiment, JIFX will host a 2 day virtual event aimed at
achieving the following outcomes:

 Development of algorithms for answering pre-existing information requirements and essential
  elements of information associated within the transportation sector from social media data;
 Development of data formats and structures for social media once identified as applicable to pre-
  existing information requirements and essential elements of information that is technology and
  platform-agnostic;
 Development of methods for integration of structured social media data within operational
  environments, including integration with other transportation-related data layers, to achieve
  situational awareness of complex events and dynamic data sources; and
 Development of methods for visualization of integrated social media and other data layers.

PARTICIPATION. NPS is seeking participation from organizations and individuals that may contribute
to the following (through personal knowledge/skillset or developed software tool):

 Aggregation and Search with the ability to search based on geographic location, keyword, and/or a
  set of scenario-specific parameters, using natural language processing (NLP) and applying inferred
  context based on pre-determined, (and machine-learning) domain-specific ontologies; identify and
  establish baseline monitoring and detect events and applicable trends, based on user-generated
  thresholds and mission-specific operational requirements; infer and assign relationships for
  aggregation purposes and to assign location based on inference or other method; and identify and
  assign meaning and context to aggregated content (versus original), including consideration for
  temporal lapse in publication of information as well as distance and time from point of event. The
  following assumptions are made with regards to aggregation and search:
   o    Information collected from social media can help to inform and enhance operational decision-
        making, resource allocation, and general situational awareness;
   o Information collected from social media can be integrated with pre-existing data layers and
        sensor data in order to produce contextual awareness of events, identify needs, and to inform
        and enhance operational decision-making, resource allocation, and general situational
        awareness;
   o Information collected from social media can be stripped of required personally identifiable
        information, without removing essential elements of information needed to provide situational
        awareness about target and specific information requirements.
 Authentication and Filtering to integrate crowdsourcing efforts and to provide a means for manual
  verification and/or comparison of crowd-sourcing results; simple GUI to enable user-generated
  filtering parameters; and to filter and remove publically identifiable information.
 Technologies that perform analysis with the ability to integrate results with pre-existing data sets
  and sensor data, to establish meaningful relationships and context between social media data and
  other information sources (automated and user-generated); predict and model potential outcomes
  based on relationships identified through integration of social media and other data points
  (automated and user-generated); and assign tags or metadata (or similar solution), and to produce
  notification and/or alerts, for the purposes of routing verified information, based on mission
  objectives and responsibilities, to the appropriate entity.
 Additional capabilities being considered also include the ability to share results of aggregation,
  filtering, and/or analysis across third party platforms and technologies, regardless of format; and
  produce visualization that is meaningful and applicable to mission objectives, as identified by end
  user; and integrate within external visualization environments, regardless of format.

EXPERIMENTATION QUESTIONS:

 Can standing information requirements be answered or verified via social media sources?
 How are the answers to standing information requirements represented via social media and can
  they be identified in a repeatable way?
 What are the decision points connected to each information requirement, once answered via social
  media, and how can additional needs identification produce or answer additional questions as they
  arise?
 Can information identified via social media sources be tagged with standardized terminology so as to
  identify the type or category of the identified information? To what pre-existing information
  structure should tags be assigned (e.g. Emergency Support Functions (ESF), National Information
  Exchange Model (NEIM), National Core Capabilities, other, etc.)?
 Can publically identifiable information (PII) be successfully removed while maintaining useful
  information applicable to standing information requirements?
 Can the geo-location of information identified be ascertained and if so, what is the best way?
 Can information identified via social media sources be authenticated through verification against
  additional sources (e.g. existing data)? If so – how?
 Can meaning be established in the relationships between information identified via social media
  sources and pre-existing data? If so – how, and what does this look like?




            Interested parties should request to participate by completing the
                online registration. You will be notified of your acceptance.

				
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