Tech for Good in Indonesia: Humanitarian Chatbots for Climate Disaster Response and Recovery


(Note: The title of this webinar has been changed. Previously known as “Banjir, Bots and Gotong Royong: Open-Source Software for Climate Adaptation”)

About the Webinar

Intensifying and increasingly unpredictable weather patterns have become a major climate issue for many cities in Southeast Asia. These cities are regularly faced with the challenge of anticipating and responding to extreme weather events. As the challenge of predicting and pre-emptively preparing for disaster events multiplies, real-time information regarding the location and severity of disasters is critical for timely and informed decision-making for both residents and response teams.

Drawing from their work in Indonesia, this webinar will share how the design and development of open-source systems can overcome this challenge, mainly through the use of crowdsourcing as the tool used to aid in disaster and humanitarian recovery. The award-winning platform, (Disaster Map Indonesia), provides residents and first responders with a two-way disaster information sharing system that allows real-time coordination at an unprecedented scale. It is the first platform of its kind to prove the value of integrated social media and API-sourced data for the civic co-management of disasters resulting from extreme weather events in Southeast Asia. This webinar would thus highlight the factors that enable the success of this platform and how it had helped affected regions in their responses toward natural disasters. Highlighting the relationship between software and social behaviours, the webinar will also discuss how the development of crowd-sourcing software can help to propel social and environmental justice. The speaker will also share her experiences in navigating Indonesia’s tech landscape, especially the challenges and pitfalls.

About the Speaker

Nashin Mahtani is the director of Yayasan Peta Bencana (Disaster Map Foundation), where she leads a multidisciplinary team in developing open-source software for democratic climate adaptation and humanitarian aid. She is currently also a visiting lecturer at McGill University (Montreal) and the Royal College of Art (London). Nashin is also principal co-investigator of MERA, a research collective developing speculative proposals for new sovereign layers of governance based on ecological systems. Her work spans from activism to design and scholarship, bridging the disciplines of architecture, infrastructure, politics, humanitarianism and design activism. Nashin’s work has been widely published in numerous journals and exhibited across various international venues. She was one of five global finalists of the prestigious Cisco Youth Leadership Award in 2019, listed as a Southeast Asian Women Leader by the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative in 2020, and was recognized as the 2018 Woman Innovator by the Information Society Innovation Fund Asia. She was also recently included in Asia’s Forbes 30 Under 30 list for her significant contributions towards the region’s social issues in 2021.


This webinar will be delivered online entirely. You can join the webinar at the specified date and time using devices (computer, phone, or tablet) with internet connection.

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If you have questions for the speaker, please key in your questions via the Q&A, stating your name and affiliation. The moderator will field them to the speaker during the Q&A session.


May 17 2021


3:00 pm - 4:15 pm