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Disaster management

What's the Master's Geo-information Science and Earth Observation about?

There is an urgent need to integrate hazard assessment and disaster risk management into strategic planning and sustainable development. Our exposure and vulnerability to extreme events - including both natural and human-induced hazards - continue to increase. Worldwide the impact of disasters is rapidly growing. However, many countries and development agencies so far do not consider hazard and disaster risk in development planning, and lack sufficient strategies to plan, assess, prevent or mitigate the effects of extreme events.

Major projects

The Caribbean region is often hit by natural disasters, causing  massive damage and economic loss. In order to better prepare local government agencies a program was developed to build capacity in Ministries for spatial planning and infrastructure

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17 young scientists from all over the world were brought together under the CHANGES project to do research on a wide range of aspects of multi-hazard risk assessment, and at the same time building a healthy and open research attitude with an eye for societal relevance.

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Integrated Flood Management in Kampala

Flash floods are a serious and recurring problem in Kampala. Though these floods do not generally have a very long duration they do cause major disruptions and they entail high economic and social costs, especially for people living in the relatively low-lying valleys and wetlands.

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When a disaster has struck and buildings have collapsed, such as after the Hurricane Irma in Sint Maarten, search and rescue teams only have little time to look for survivors. Where UAV or robot technology is available the time needed to find survivors can be reduced significantly.

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At ITC, we focus on fundamental and problem-solving research where spatial information can make a real difference. Our scientific staff en PhD candidates in the field of disaster risk management research topics such as disaster risk reduction, damage mapping using UAV’s and post-disaster recovery assessment.


ITC is known to be one of the top institutes worldwide in the field of Geo-information science and earth observation. At ITC, we train students to engineer approaches for designing future-oriented solutions to the world's biggest challenges. We encourage our students to participate in public-private partnership projects initiated by ITC and other organizations.

Related courses

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  • Disaster Risk Management and Environmental Assessment for Spatial Planning

    Certificate6 weeks100% English
    The course provides a unique opportunity to integrate a multidisciplinary assessment of risk into strategic planning processes.
  • Geo-information Science and Earth Observation

    Master of Science2 years100% English8 specialisations3 Joint programmes
    This programme takes an application-oriented approach to collecting, processing, analyzing and visualizing spatial data. Graduates are at the forefront of one of today’s fastest growing industries.

    8 specialisations for Geo-information Science and Earth Observation

    Applied Remote Sensing for Earth Sciences

    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Learn to explore earth resources to help securing future demands for energy and minerals.

    Free specialization

    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Design your very own specialization

    Geo-Information Management for Land Administration

    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Learn to use cadastral intelligence for designing and applying responsible land administration solutions.


    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Learn to develop technologies required for analyzing, distributing and visualizing geo-spatial data.

    Natural Hazards and Disaster Risk Reduction

    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Learn to predict and monitor multi-hazard risk and help reducing our vulnerability to disasters.

    Natural Resources Management

    MSc3 Joint programmes
    Learn to utilize geo-spatial data for sustainable agriculture, environement and forests.

    Urban Planning and Management

    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Learn to understand dynamic urban processes and create interventions to help make cities competitive, compact, sustainable, inclusive and resilient.

    Water Resources and Environmental Management

    MSc2 Joint programmes
    Learn to use earth observation and geo-information techniques to create safe and sustainable water management solutions.
  • Spatial Data for Disaster Risk Management

    Certificate3 weeks100% English
    This course shows you how spatial data is used in advanced methods for risk assessment, incl. techniques for probabilistic risk assessment, the end users and the Spatial Data Infrastructure required.
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