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STORM Dashboard provides collaborative and operative services to better act in the prevention and intervention phases of a disaster

Knowledge sharing plays a central role specifically during , allowing the access to and the availability of critical information regarding risks and disasters. Lack of information complicates the efficient management of catastrophes and weakens the decision-making processes. For these reasons, it is fundamental to develop an infrastructure able to manage knowledge and, most specifically, to increase economic and social values fostering knowledge creation and sharing, to use to perform better, to be updated and to enhance sustainability. Communication and decision-making during must occur in a compressed timeline since faster than usual is needed to stabilise a dangerous situation, prevent further losses, and begin reconstruction. In such complex situations, a collaborative and dynamic environment allows the actors to interact with each other and join their efforts so as to collectively cooperate. Such a kind of environment needs supporting tools allowing a timely situational picture generation and sharing with the aim to facilitate the communication and collaboration among users, as well as to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of decision-making. In the context of the H2020 STORM (700191) research project was designed and implemented a Collaborative and Decision-Making Dashboard where, at any moment, the end users can have an up to date situational picture to better act either in the phase to mitigate the effect of climate phenomena or in the intervention phase when a disaster occurs. The proposed tools vectored through leading-edge technologies are expected to enhance collaboration, co-ordination and to support decision-making amongst stakeholders. In the STORM Collaborative Decision-Making platform, collaborative and operational environments are strongly interconnected each other. Existing knowledge (e.g. , guidelines, , procedures and processes, etc.) related to natural disaster risks and impacts can help teams of experts in making decisions and sharing new knowledge (e.g. from the situational picture, and data analytics) for a prompt and more effective . The platform aims to be the enabler (and at the same time supportive) for the development of a collaborative environment. A customizable dashboard, mapping the current situation in a synthetic way and gathering the most relevant information, is a key asset for supporting an efficient and effective decision making. As a main benefit, the involved actors will be aware about the formulation and selection of risk reduction measures based on available risk information and stakeholders’ needs, speeding up response time where the right people with the relevant skills and disaster events are identified in a more timely manner. STORM Collaborative Decision-Making platform provides a set of specific collaborative and operative services coming from the two interconnected environments. Specifically, the collaborative services are on the top of the dashboard, namely Network & Site, Process Mining, Update News and Document Library, along with the User Profile and the Semantic Search. The operative services are on the left side, namely Sensory Map, Visual Analytics, Event Manager, Risk Assessment and Situation Awareness.

 

Collaborative services

A set of collaborative services is provided in order to enable the Cultural Heritage and emergency stakeholders to collect, contribute and share data and information as well as the knowledge on the potential threats, vulnerabilities, risks, along with the actions to be performed to manage, in a suitable way, the critical situation when it occurs, putting in the loop both their own experience and skills. The available data and information related to the disaster (i.e. threats, vulnerability and risks) and how have to be managed, are collected, managed and shared among different community of stakeholders (e.g. emergency operators, first responders, citizens, public authorities, etc.).

  • User Profile. Every user registered on the platform has its own profile and access to a set of specific sites he belongs to and the roles assigned. User profile gives each user a complete visibility into how other users manage knowledge and their activities. Moreover, it shows user’s relevant roles and responsibilities, so each user knows who is responsible for each relevant area, procedure and task.
  • Semantic Search. The Semantic Search service is a functionality featured as an intelligent information retrieval. This approach tries to understand the intent and the context around a query in order to retrieve the most pertinent resources, related to the particular information request. It delivers the user a better match to queried content and information.
  • Network & Sites. The Network & Sites is a way to organise activities among all the members belonging to the same site. In this way, it is possible to avoid sharing of data, activities with unwanted receivers.
  • Process Mining. The Process Mining supports site managers and Cultural Heritage professionals during the STORM Quick Assessment process, covering both the phases of feeding and using the system, before and after an hazard. The STORM Quick Assessment process consists of the following procedural phases: Data Collection, , Response and Debriefing.
  • Update News.  This service allows users to share particular news. In this way, tacit knowledge on strategic issues arises. The service allows community users to add blogs, categorise and associate them to other contents on the platform.
  • Document Library. The Document Library is a service that supports document management (upload, view and download documents) among users. Each user can organise documents by grouping them into specific folders so that everyone can easily consult them. The service allows users to add a new folder in order to upload one or more documents at one time.

 

Operative services

A set of operative tools, services and application for a collaborative decision making to assist in making decisions by providing additional supportive tools and services to enhance understanding and management of a critical situation in a collaborative and shared manner. A set of operative tools, services and applications helps to generate the current situation to be analysed giving all the necessary information to identify decisions that need to be made; recognise the right processes/tasks to be selected and people (and their specific role) to be involved for each of them; evaluate the measurements and options to make better decisions; collaborate with other involved stakeholders; gathering the most relevant information in order to detect anomalous events; evaluate the decision taken. Moreover, to enable an effective decision making process, users need a complete overview of the critical situation that means, in terms of data and information, an integration of current (real-time) and past knowledge of critical evolution to help decision making leading actors to better understand the situation in progress.

  • Sensory Map. The Sensory Map service shows the monitoring areas and the position of the installed sensors. It consists of a 2D map where the icons depict the position of the installed online sensors and the results coming from the offline sensors with regard to the main areas to be monitored due to they have been affected by main hazards.
  • Visual Analytics. The Visual Analytics service gathers (online) sensor network data and other relevant information from the disaster-affected areas and presents the result their analysis to the user in an effective graphical way. In that view, data are processed to provide easy-to-understand representations considering both past events and the current situation at sites.
  • Diagnosis Reporting. The Diagnosis Reporting enables the detection of hazardous events or identifies relevant threats starting from the useful information extracted by processing and analysing data from online and offline sensors. The detection of a damage caused by a hazardous event previously occurred or the identification of some threats that could increase the exposition or vulnerability of an asset against specific hazards can be notified to the platform.
  • Risk Assessment and Management tool. Risk Assessment and Management tool supports the derivation of appropriate risk management strategies developed in the context of STORM. The tool aims to help the site managers and experts to assess the level of risk in different areas of the site and determine site-specific strategies to mitigate the risk associated with natural hazards and climate change.
  • Situation Awareness service. Situation Awareness services provides a detailed view of maps with all the indicators and parameters essential to take under control the situation and assist decision makers. A clear picture of the situation with all the details about vulnerability and risk areas, hazardous events, and other relevant information are visualised in a thematic map in order to identify the impact on a cultural heritage site, its areas and assets. In this way, users can understand the current situation status, having a real-time monitoring on how the situation evolves and enabling a kind of common operational picture.

 

STORM Collaborative and Decision Making Dashboard has introduced a comprehensive approach that supports end users with transversal services as data analytics and knowledge sharing during all these phases. The main features and consequent benefits of the STORM Dashboard are the creation of an interactive environment that would not only provide opportunities for an exchange of information among users of the system but could also facilitate the establishment of closer links. A speeding up of the response times where the right people with the relevant skills are identified more quickly and disaster events dealt with in a faster manner. Finally, a more effective collaboration between the different actors by interactively involving them in the decision making process has been established.

STORM Use Cases

One of the main aims of the STORM solutions is that these tools can be used in any Cultural Heritage context in Europe and over the world. Therefore, it was of the highest importance that the technologies, services and processes developed in the project could be tested in an appropriate number of different Cultural Heritage sites. The five pilot sites selected, located in five different countries, are indeed one of the strengths of the project, as they are very different in location, size, historical period, as well as in the threats menacing them and in their conservation problems and needs. Each STORM pilot site has defined experimental scenarios and simulation activities according to the specific needs. The aim of the experimental campaign is to validate the proposed solutions in relation to the three phases defined in the project, covering a comprehensive approach with ex ante planning and , management and actions, and activities, namely:

  • : Identification, assessment, and monitoring of risks, improving prevention and real-time monitoring;
  • Situation Awareness: improving management of and disasters;
  • First Aid: improving recovery activities.

The selected pilot sites are: the Mellor Heritage Project (United Kingdom); the Baths of Diocletian in Rome (Italy); the Historical Centre of Rethymno (Greece); the Roman Ruins of Tróia (Portugal); the Ancient City of Ephesus (Turkey).

The Mellor Heritage Project is a complex consisting of three individual sites of different ages (a mill of the industrial period, a bronze-age burial, an Iron-Age defensive ditch), located in very different “micro-climatic” conditions. A series of seven experiments and trials have been performed at Mellor Heritage Project: the first 5 experimental scenarios are ongoing throughout the project and focus on using photogrammetry, laser scanning and weather station data against the freeze thaw hazard to intercept damage before the hazard evolves into a bigger issue. The final two are process experiments, which tested the entire STORM process for two sudden-onset hazards: intense rainfall and high winds and electrical storms. These two experiments involve two drills at the Mellor site with the participation of volunteers and archaeologists to enact STORM processes.

The Baths of Diocletian are built by the emperor Diocletian between 298 and 306 A.D. During the Renaissance, the Roman ruins were transformed to host a Charterhouse and in 1870 the area became a museum. The conservation and the restoration of the ancient structures have to be integrated with the preservation and the exposition of the museum items. At the Baths of Diocletian, during the project, a weather station and Fiber Bragg Grating (FBG) sensors were installed, and a Laser scanner campaign was carried out in order to test the platform in case of these slow-onset hazards: rising humidity, vibrations and biological degradation. Moreover, the Baths of Diocletian, as every STORM pilot site, organized two experimentations to test and first aid in case of sudden-onset hazards. The first drill simulated the strong wind hazard in the garden damaging two sarcophagus. The second drill was carried out with the intervention of fire-fighters, archaeologists and restorers and simulated an earthquake of medium instensity damaging an ancient pillar of the building and an ancient sarcophagus.

The Historical Centre of Rethymno is composed by several buildings and monuments different in terms of chronological, architectural and historic value. The main building is the Fortezza Fortress, constructed in the 16th century. At the Historical Centre of Rethymno, experiments were carried out using photogrammetry, laser scan, photography camera, conductivity meter, weather stations and accelerographs to test prevention in case of salinization at the Lighthouse at the Venetian Port area. Furthermore, two more exercises to test the processes of dealing with sudden-onset hazards and to improve the preparedness and response actions of all the involved actors were carried out: the first simulated intense rainfall hazard affecting the St. Lucas bastion in Fortezza Fortress, while the second simulated an earthquake of medium intensity at the Fortezza Fortress, damaging the watchtower on the corner of St. Paul’s bastion.

The Roman Ruins of Tróia comprise the rests of a large urban industrial agglomerate built on a sand embankment between the Sado River estuary and the Atlantic Ocean. The STORM risk assessment of the site of Tróia clearly showed that its most threatening hazard, critically affecting all shoreline structures, is coastal erosion, resulting from hydrodynamic factors such as tides and waves of local generation. At the Roman Ruins of Tróia a number of experiments were implemented using photogrammetry, induced fluorescence sensors and environmental sensors coupled with image recording and crack-meters to test prevention against the tidal and wave action, intense rainfall and biological colonization. Furthermore, two drills to experiment STORM processes for sudden-onset hazards have been performed, simulating coastal erosion and local wind with salinization.

The main building of the Ancient City of Ephesus is the Great Theater, built around the 3rd century BC. Hazard analysis reveals that earthquake is the most damaging sudden onset disaster, hence early assessment of the structural behavior under earthquake excitation is one of the most important challenges. The experimental campaign in Ephesus addressed two main hazards: “earthquake” as a sudden-onset hazard and “prolonged dry period/heat wave” as a slow-onset hazard. The earthquake scenario was approached through two complementary experimental scenarios. The first one tested and validated the technological solutions deployed at the pilot site. The second one involved multiple external actors in order to assess the performance of the response process. Finally, a third scenario tested the process response to “prolonged dry periods/heat waves”, one of the main risks at the pilot site.

Overall, more than thirty experimental scenarios have been demonstrated at the pilot sites to validate the three levels of STORM outcomes: technologies, services and processes. During the experimental campaign it was demonstrated and confirmed how a good and well-planned prevention is important for the optimal conservation of Cultural Heritage, experimenting new methodologies and treatments, which can be effective for slow-onset hazards management. Furthermore, thanks to the organization of the ten drills for sudden-onset hazards it was possible to experience how the preparedness can be useful for an adequate and effective emergency intervention. In these situations, the platform proved to be very useful, allowing the professional figures dealing with the emergency to have all the necessary information real-time, thanks to all the documentation and data collected before the critical situation.

Related CM functions

Use Case - Baths of Diocletian
Use Case - Historical Centre of Rethymno
Use Case - Ephesus
Use Case - Mellor Heritage Project
Use Case - Roman Ruins of Troia
Illustrations
STORM_Collaborative Decision-Making Dashboard_Home Page. It includes the cultural sites which are currently protected, e.g. Diocletian Baths (Rome, Italy), Rethymno historical centre (Crete, Greece), Ephesus (Anatolia, Turkey)))
The image shows an example of the news published on STORM platform
An example of the Event Manager service, including site name, area, item, status, description, time, range and category
Process mining - it includes information on the site and its main contacts
Offline details accessible on the cultural site (e.g. drone roundhouse)
Offline sensors displayed on map layers
Image showing online details (updated real time)
Online sensors displayed on the map
The Risk Management Dashboard allows to perform Site Hazard Assessment, Risk Assessment and display the Risk Management Strategies
Situation awareness displayed through layers on a map, including Events, Exposure, Risk, Severity, Site Areas, etc.
Image displaying a map and a list of the situational awareness services
Visual analytics list
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