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Steve Peterson, Chris Thompson, & Cat Graham. (2018). Getting Disaster Data Right: A Call for Real-time Research in Disaster Response. In Kees Boersma, & Brian Tomaszeski (Eds.), ISCRAM 2018 Conference Proceedings – 15th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management (pp. 851–859). Rochester, NY (USA): Rochester Institute of Technology.
Abstract: In the response phase of disasters, minimal research has been conducted on the near real-time operational usage of social media. Research findings during this phase could provide evidence to the emergency management community that social media content can be retrieved, verified, and ultimately utilized in decision-making. This paper discusses potential strategies for conducting future research in near real-time during disasters to gain insightful knowledge rarely captured. Following the April 25, 2015, magnitude 7.8 Nepal earthquake, a team of 20 digital volunteers were virtually activated for 48 hours to extract medical-related information from multiple social media platforms and Internet sources. This practitioner insight paper examines methods applied to filter, classify, analyze, verify, and distribute the medical-related information in a timely manner. Association of past research studies are applied to the digital volunteer's experience within a case study framework, calling attention to the feasibility of digital volunteers as an information source in future research.