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WOVOdat – the global volcano unrest database aimed at improving eruption forecasts

Fidel Costa (Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore) (Asian School of the Environment, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Christina Widiwijayanti (Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Thin Zar Win Nang (Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Erickson Fajiculay (Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Tania Espinosa-Ortega (Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Christopher Newhall (Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore) (Mirisbiris Garden and Nature Center, Albay, The Philippines)

Disaster Prevention and Management

ISSN: 0965-3562

Article publication date: 11 November 2019

Issue publication date: 11 November 2019

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to highlight the importance of a comprehensive global database on volcanic unrest (WOVOdat) as a resource to improve eruption forecasts, hazard evaluation and mitigation actions.

Design/methodology/approach

WOVOdat is a centralized database that hosts multi-parameter monitoring data sets from unrest and eruption episodes of volcanoes worldwide. Its online interface (https://wovodat.org/) allows interactive data analysis and comparison between volcanoes and eruption styles, which is needed during volcanic crises, as well as to perform basic research on pre-eruption processes, teaching and outreach.

Findings

WOVOdat aims to standardize and organize the myriad of monitoring data types at the global scale. Users can compare changes during a crisis to past unrest episodes, and estimate probabilities of outcomes using evidence-based statistics. WOVOdat will be to volcanology as an epidemiological database is to medicine.

Research limitations/implications

The success of eruption forecast relies on data completeness, and thus requires the willingness of observatories, governments and researchers to share data across the volcano community.

Practical implications

WOVOdat is a unique resource that can be studied to understand the causes of volcanic unrest and to improve eruption forecasting.

Originality/value

WOVOdat is the only compilation of standardized and multi-parameter volcano unrest data from around the world, and it is freely and easily accessible through an online interface.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

We thank the USGS/USAID Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (C. Dan Miller, J. Pallister) for seed funding to get WOVOdat going, and to the Earth Observatory of Singapore (K. Sieh, Director) for major funding to turn the concept into reality. Other colleagues that are contributing or have contributed to WOVOdta on various ways include Jacopo Selva, Warner Marzocchi, Paolo Papale, Giuseppe Puglisi and Danilo Reitano (INGV); Florian Schwandner (ETH, NTU and currently at JPL), Eisuke Fujita and Hideki Ueda (NIED); Renato Solidum, Mariton Bornas, Maricel Capa, Jane Catapang (PHIVOLCS); Kasbani, Mochammad Hendrasto, Hendra Gunawan, Agus Budisantoso, IGMA Nandaka, Hanik Humaida (CVGHM); Noritake Nishide, Satoshi Harada, Hitoshi Yamasato, Takeshi Koizumi, Yohko Igarashi, Koji Kato, Yoshiaki Fujiwara (JMA); Sarah Ogburn, Stephanie Prejean, Jeremy Pesicek (VDAP), Nico Fournier, Gill Jolly (GNS); Shinji Takarada and Joel Bandibas (GSJ); Freysteinn Sigmundsson (University of Iceland) and Kristin Vogfjord (IMO), Simon Carn and Verity Flower (MTU), Matt Pritchard (Cornell), Juliet Biggs, Steve Sparks and Jo Gottsmann (Univ of Bristol), Steve Malone (Univ of Washington), Steve McNutt (University of South Florida); Tom Simkin, Jim Luhr, Lee Siebert, Paul Kimberly, Ed Venzke, Liz Cottrell, and Ben Andrews (Smithsonian); and Chuck Merteens (UNAVCO). We also thank Sue Loughlin (BGS) for highlighting the opportunity to contribute to this report.

Citation

Costa, F., Widiwijayanti, C., Nang, T.Z.W., Fajiculay, E., Espinosa-Ortega, T. and Newhall, C. (2019), "WOVOdat – the global volcano unrest database aimed at improving eruption forecasts", Disaster Prevention and Management, Vol. 28 No. 6, pp. 738-751. https://doi.org/10.1108/DPM-09-2019-0301

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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