Resilience and data in New Zealand: The Data Integration and Visualisation En Masse (Dive) Platform 2016 summary

Joanne R. Stevenson, John Vargo, Chris Thompson,  Lucy-Jane Walsh

Resilient Organisations Research Report 2017/01, April 2017


New Zealand is exposed to a wide range of natural disasters, in no small part because New Zealand straddles the boundary between two tectonic plates with its attendant risk of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. The New Zealand Government has committed across several platforms to building the resilience of its people, places, and economy to ensure safety, stability, and prosperity in the face of significant exposure to disruption.

Understanding the current state of the nation’s resilience and achieving systemic improvements requires cross-institutional and transdisciplinary collaboration and research innovation. Such models, however, present challenges to the status quo of data sharing and management.

Information inefficiencies and gaps hinder the progress of those tackling New Zealand’s most complex and important issues. The success of these research programmes requires a new knowledge development ethos. Meaningful collaboration across institutions and disciplines requires effective information management. This means creating spaces where data can be captured, safely shared, and managed to ensure quality, appropriate use, and ongoing development. In 2016, the NZ Centre for Earthquake Resilience (QuakeCoRE) and the Resilience to Nature’s Challenges – National Science Challenge, funded a small team of researchers from Resilient Organisations Ltd. in collaboration with UC CEISMIC (the Canterbury Earthquake Digital Archive) to investigate how to best enable teams of researchers to address complex social problems that will make New Zealand more resilient.

Using a design-thinking approach the research team developed the Data Integration and Visualisation En mass (DIVE) platform. Although it is still in the early phases of development, the DIVE platform encompasses data management processes, institutional structures, web-based software, and stakeholders (i.e., the people and organisations that will use DIVE). The aim of the DIVE platform is to enable teams of researchers, decision makers, and practitioners to address
complex problems by:

  • Making data sharing safe, easy, and desirable;
  • Establishing standards and guidance for transdisciplinary data management;
  • Enhancing access to public, proprietary, and sensitive data sources; and
  • Facilitating data integration, analysis, and visualisation.

This report details the work conducted throughout 2016 to develop the DIVE platform. We begin by describing the methods used to develop the DIVE platform, followed by a summary of findings and outputs of the stakeholder consultation and initial development processes. This section features the current capabilities of the DIVE platform in its initial prototype form. The report concludes with an overview of the benefits and opportunities provided by the platform, and an outlook for future development.

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