Ground Truth 2.0

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Introduction

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Ground Truth 2.0 is a 3-year EC funded project that is setting up and validating six citizen observatories in real conditions, in four European and two African demonstration cases. The project is demonstrating that such observatories are technologically feasible, can be implemented sustainably and that they have many societal and economic benefits. The ultimate objective is the global market uptake of the concept and the enabling technologies.

The thematic focus of Ground Truth 2.0 is on flora and fauna, as well as water availability and water quality, for land and natural resources management. The project uses mobile apps and social media analytics to collect explicitly and implicitly-sensed citizen data. As such, citizens are enabled to share data about the environment and to take on a new, crucial role in environmental monitoring, decision making, cooperative planning and environmental stewardship.

Ground Truth 2.0 recognises the importance of real-life interaction between people and technology to set up a successful system. Its innovative approach combines the social dimensions of citizen observatories with enabling technologies, so that the implementation of the respective citizen observatories is tailored to their envisaged societal and economic impacts.

Ground Truth 2.0 builds on previous projects related to citizen observatories, earth observation and land-use modelling, undertaken with the participation of Ground Truth 2.0 consortium partners. The consortium partners present a good mix of industry, SME, NGO, government, research and academia to ensure the worldwide commercialisation of the Ground Truth 2.0 concept.

How GT 2.0 relates to Tygron

Tygron is one of the technical partners in the Ground Truth project. In two of the six demo cases Tygron contributes by visualizing the collected citizen data. The Tygron Platform will be used for impact sessions with stakeholders. Based on the collected data, different scenarios will be explored during these sessions. Even though the focus for all demo cases is environmental quality, the demo cases differ based on local culture and challenges.

Demo Case Belgium

Environmental quality of life in Flanders

Flanders, the Northern region of Belgium, is one of the most urbanized in the world, with a population density close to 500 inhabitants/km². This leads to pressure on the environmental quality. Ground Truth 2.0 aims to improve dialogue between citizens and decision makers by creating a platform where they can share information on the local living environment, specifically on air and water quality, noise, waste and open space. With such a platform, local problems can be signalized, better monitored, be put on the political agenda and improved.

This demo case targets the public at large, but two cities have been selected for piloting: Mechelen and Hooglede.

Visit the websiteMeetMeeMechelen to see the results so far of the air quality measurements and planned events.

Demo case Sweden

Water quality management in socio-ecological systems

One of the most challenging environmental problems facing Sweden is eutrophication (nutrient pollution) of land and water. The main sources of this pollution are agriculture, industry and municipal wastewater treatment plants. Existing data is dispersed, and environmental monitoring by citizens is disconnected from decision making.

In this demo case, Ground Truth 2.0 partners will work in two pilot municipalities (Eskilstuna and Skarpnak) to engage citizens in environmental data gathering via the FreshWater Watch Platform by Earthwatch. Schools, NGOs, local government bodies and institutions will be targeted. In addition, citizens’ social network discussions are analyzed to get a picture of local, regional and national needs. Stakeholder interaction will take place through, for example, serious gaming with the ultimate goal of cooperative planning.

Visit the website Vattenfokus to see the results so far of the water measurements and planned events.

Research

At the beginning of the Ground Truth 2.0 project we have done research about how to implement the needed data in order to create a 3D world of the abroad projects in Belgium and Sweden. We know what kind of data is needed to create the 3D world but questions like; What data is available? What kind of files are available and to what extent is that ready to use for the Tygron Platform? What update is needed to the Tygron Platform to create the 3D environments of the Ground Truth 2.0 projects?

Based on the outcomes the Tygron Platform has had some updates to make the implementation of abroad data easier and faster. One of the main outcomes is about the import of functions. This needed to be done one building function at the time. This took up a lot of time and was not ideal. With the update that has been done based on the outcomes this is one of the most important adjustments. A data set can now be imported entirely and all included building functions can be assigned a separate building functions at once.

Below some tutorials that were created when researching the options to enhance the created 3D model. This is based on the outcomes of the research and are applicable for all projects before the updates have been implemented in the Tygron Platform. Because the updates did take place already some of the tutorials are outdated now. The tutorials can still be used, but the process to import data is much easier now and integrated in the Tygron Platform completely.

The outcome of what data is available in the specific region is that in general not more data than you can find on OpenStreetMap. We are still working on both cases to gather additional information on the case areas.

Where to find information

It is important for the Ground Truth 2.0 consortium to keep citizens, stakeholders and enthousiasts informed about the progress of the project. To do so, Ground Truth makes use of multiple informative platforms. Via these channels we like to keep not only locals, but people from all over the world informed about the project. Because the contribution of citizens is key for GT 2.0 different ways to approach people are made available.

Website

Ground Truth 2.0 has a website where you can read up to date news about this project. Also a blog is available to give you some more in-depth information about the demo cases. Go to the Ground Truth 2.0 website to read all about the project.

Social Media

To keep you informed about the activity and progress, the Ground Truth 2.0 project is also active on Social Media.

Twitter

For Twitter you can use the following hashtag to tweet about Ground Truth 2.0: "#observe4earth".

Facebook

Ground Truth 2.0 is also active on Facebook.

Events

You can find Ground Truth on events all around the world. Are you interested in meeting us face-to-face? Check the event calender to see when we are at an event near you.