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Mapping for Nepal earthquake response at Branner Library

In response to Friday’s powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake in Nepal, Stanford volunteer “crisis mappers” are working with Humanitarian OpenStreetMap to assist in disaster relief by mapping Nepal’s road networks, buildings, and residential areas.

Anyone with a laptop and spare time can help responders on the ground. The Stanford Geospatial Center housed in the Branner Earth Sciences Library will be hosting ongoing Introductory Relief Mapping sessions all week to help train people to use OpenStreetMap, an open source and open data sharing tool adding information to relief effort maps. Drop-in volunteers are encouraged to join all day from 9am-9pm, Monday-Friday.

The first Introductory Relief Mapping session will be held Monday, April 17 from 6-7pm at the Branner Earth Sciences Library Teaching Corner, on the 2nd floor of the Mitchell Earth Science Building.

Anyone from Stanford or from the community is encouraged to attend one of these sessions. Note: If you are not a Stanford affiliate, we can connect you to the Stanford Guest WiFi to work on relief mapping, or participate in the workshops.

How to help immediately:

Map4Nepal@Stanford Co-location & Support

If you want to contribute immediately to ongoing Humanitarian Mapping efforts for Nepal through Humanitarian, join currently hundreds of people mapping on HOTOSM for the Nepal Earthquake by following these steps:

  1. Go through the 30 minute online  training on to learn the basics of humanitarian mapping using
  2. Then go to the HOTOSM Task Manager at and select a job that you feel comfortable contributing to. Read the directions carefully for the job, then select one of the squares next to one that is marked as complete. This will allow you to pan to the completed square so you can see how others are digitizing the features and mimic their work.
  3. For more information, see this DigitalGlobe post for information:

More about the earthquake:

The 7.9 magnitude earthquake that struck Nepal on Friday was the country's biggest in eight decades. The death toll from has risen to more than 2,500 with over 29 districts designated as crisis zones. About 90% of the 1,000 homes in the villages of Laprak and Barpak near the epicenter were destroyed. The quake triggered an avalanche on Mt. Everest which killed at least 18 climbers. 

For more information: 

Updated information is online here: For more information contact Geospatial Manager Stace Maples at or visit the library during open hours, all week long. 

Branner Library Teaching Corner Hours:
Monday - Thursday: 9am - 9pm
Friday 9am - 5pm