Philippines/Building Resilient Communities in Bohol Through the Use of OpenStreetMap

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The UP Resilience Institute Youth Mappers was awarded a grant by the TELUS Community Board to implement the project "Building Resilient Communities Through the use of OpenStreetMap". The main objective of the project is to map out the building footprints and road network and to produce municipal-level risk maps in the province of Bohol using open-source tools such as OpenStreetMap (OSM), QGIS, and WebSAFE that can be used for disaster risk planning and mitigation. The project encourages community participation and local government involvement through capacity building using OpenStreetMap. We aim to educate the people of Bohol on the open-source mapping platforms that can be helpful in generating disaster risk reduction and management plans. It can be useful in equipping Bohol with informed disaster risk reduction and management activities.

Hence, we completed a mapping workshop in Bohol that has given attending LGUs the knowledge to map their municipalities, especially the critical facilities in their communities. It was a 2-day OSM training with the government staff of different local government units of Bohol. The basics of OSM, data collection tools, and application of OSM data were the main topics discussed during the workshop. They had hands-on exercises and mini fieldwork to have a real-feel of the data collection methods that can be utilized for OSM editing and validation.

This mapping initiative was also recognized by the international OpenStreetMap community as they featured our OSM workshop photo as “OpenStreetMap Featured Image” in the OSM wiki page for a week. The featured photo was tweeted by one of the UPRI Youth Mappers trainer Carlo Felipe (

The biggest impact of the project can be seen in the municipality of Duero, Bohol. Duero had reached out to us and initiated their own OSM training and workshop after they saw the use and benefits of OSM for their municipality from our workshop. Duero's OSM training & workshop was held last September 24-25 and October 1 for all the 21 barangays of their municipality. It was attended by the barangay chairman, secretary, and barangay disaster risk reduction & management council of all the barangays of Duero. They are also looking forward to expand and do a follow up of their workshop for other Duero locals.

The project staffs, UP Resilience Institute Youth Mappers, and some Duero mappers were also included in the Top 500 OSM contributors in the Philippines for the last 2 months. Over 72,494 building footprints while over 251 roads were created and uploaded in OSM for Bohol.

Because of the TELUS International Philippines Community Board donation, we were able to organize a 2-day OpenStreetMap training event in Tagbilaran City, Bohol and pay for the salaries of our GIS team.

We were also able to engage the youth outside UP Diliman by facilitating a mapping contest for the project called Map-A-Ton Digitization Contest. This contest aims to engage more youth and volunteers to participate in our mapping task in Bohol. The top three participants with the most number of buildings created and grids closed in HOT TM will be considered as winners. It runs from August 12 to September 15, 2019.

Fifteen (15) students from Metro Manila universities participated and mapped the province of Bohol. An awarding ceremony for the top three winners took place last September 30 at the UP National Institute of Geological Sciences (NIGS) where each winner received a two thousand pesos (Php2,000.00) cash prize. A small gathering for the UPRI YouthMappers, the contest participants, and a representative of Telus International Philippines was also held where everyone interacted and shared foods bought using the donation from the TELUS International Philippines Community Board.

The project has directly benefited the UPRI YouthMappers chapter which currently has 46 members. Aside from that, the OpenStreetMap training event was attended by 17 people from the following municipalities in Bohol:

  • Sierra Bullones
  • Jagna
  • Batuan
  • Loon
  • Trinidad
  • Duero
  • Tagbilaran
  • Sagbayan
  • Bohol provincial capitol

From the 17  participants, 13 have created OpenStreetMap accounts and have started uploading building and roadmap information. The activity provided the participants with the knowledge of mapping their communities. This will not only allow them to help us with creating building footprint and roadmaps for our project, but it will help them with their disaster risk reduction plans in the future.

Aside from the numbers above, the barangay chairman, secretary and barangay disaster risk reduction & management council of the 21 barangays of Duero have also benefited and are now active mappers in OSM.

In order to monitor the progress of our mapping initiative, we have utilized the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) Tasking Manager Tool and created a task specific (#6212) for the project. The project task is open for public so anyone with access to OSM and HOT Tasking Manager can contribute to it. We made the announcement of the project, including the start of the remote mapping tasks to various OSM community groups such as OpenStreetMap Philippines and YouthMappers so that they could also provide assistance in mapping and validating the tasks.

We organized a series of internal mapathons on some weekends of August and September for the new members of the UPRI Youth Mappers. In order to ensure data quality in Bohol on OSM, we worked hard to train the current and new members on the appropriate editing techniques and validation tricks on OSM.

A series of mapathons were conducted in UP NIGS to train the new members of the UPRI Youth Mappers on how to use OSM and its validation tools.

Aside from contributing data to OSM, the UPRI Youth Mappers also serve as validators of the edits in Bohol and has also provided remote assistance to Duero, Bohol, especially in the validation part.

As of October 30, 2019, 60% of the mapping project has been completed while 8% has been validated. The mapping task has not been fully completed as of date because we only have 4 active mappers from the UPRI YouthMappers who continuously contribute to the mapping task. Furthermore, as the mapping task of Bohol is tagged as LOW priority, it won’t show up at the top of tasks for volunteers to contribute to. High to medium priority tasks are usually tagged and dedicated for the projects that need immediate attention from the volunteer mappers because the data generated will be used for urgent disaster operations. The recent typhoon (Typhoon Tisoy) that hit Catanduanes and the earthquake in Mindanao had urged the volunteer mappers from the Philippines and from the international community to prioritize these mapping tasks. Nevertheless, the mapping task in HOT Tasking Manager will still be open to the public as we aim to finish the mapping and validation tasks even though the funding has ended.

The total number of buildings that has been uploaded to OSM is 125,665 and can be downloaded for free at