George Clooney and Google team up to stop Sudanese civil war
George Clooney, Google, the United Nations and the Harvard Human Initiative are among those who have teamed up to start Satellite Sentinel, a project to monitor the country of Sudan via satellite in the hope of preventing civil war.
The oil-rich Southern region of Sudan is slated to vote on a referendum for independence next month and many are concerned that the vote may spark civil unrest and war. The point of Satellite Sentinel, according to a press release from the site, is to "capture possible threats to civilians, observe the movement of displaced people, detect bombed and razed villages, or note other evidence of pending mass violence."
Commercial satellites pick up the images, which are sent to Satellite Sentinel from the UN's Satellite Applications Program. The UN then collaborates with Google and Trellon to design the web platform for the public to easily access the images and reports.
On the analysis side, the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative will provide system-wide research to provide context for the satellite imagery, while a non-profit group called The Enough Project contributes field reports, provides policy analysis. Together with Not On Our Watch -- a non-profit started by Clooney and his colleagues Don Cheadle, Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, David Pressman, and Jerry Weintraub -- the Enough Project will push for policy solutions and raise public awareness.
The site uses Google's familiar mapping interface to pinpoint areas of interest on the map. The project launches today.
| December 29, 2010; 10:15 AM ET
Categories: Digital culture, Policy and politics
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