e-shape at EGU General Assembly | 26 April 2021

Webinar: Earth Observation based solution supporting disaster resilience: hands-on the e-shape user-centric approach


Improving disaster resilience is a key global challenge that unites different stakeholders across the planet. In 2018 alone a sample of 63 countries have reported $17.5 billion in direct economic loss, with agricultural losses reaching $13 billion. Specialists estimate that the real economic losses at the global scale amount to hundreds of billions of dollars – in 2019 the figure reached $232 billion. The reality represented in these figures becomes even more critical when considering that both natural and human induced disasters such as floods, droughts, fires, and geo-hazards, are predicted to increase in frequency and intensity due to climate change, unplanned and rapid urbanization, poverty, and other factors.

Earth observation (EO) based solutions play an important role in supporting disaster resilience. The sector has extended the circle of the stakeholders involved in disaster resilience building, to include not only the civil society, civil protection authorities, or government institutes, but also private actors representing commercial sectors and different industries. In this context, the pilot projects developed within the e-shape H2020 project represent concrete examples to that effect, as they have been conceived with the vision of an “umbrella” of services helping authorities, but also enabling a commercial application.

From the water showcase, the pilot “Improved historical water availability and quality information, integrates EO data into continental and global scale hydrological models in order to assess water quality and availability, providing accurate and reliable historical records of hydro-climatic information, critical for flooding, drought and water resources management. In the disaster showcase, the pilot “EO4D_ASH – EO Data for Detection, Discrimination & Distribution (4D) of Volcanic ash”, through meteorological modelling combining in-situ and EO data,  provides volcanic ash spread estimations to commercial airlines, improving the critical infrastructure protection capability in Europe and helping reducing vulnerabilities concerning critical infrastructures.

Webinar and format

The webinar will revolve around the presentation of the coordinated approach to support research communities demonstrating and bringing their EO-based solutions to serve policy makers, civil society, civil protection mechanisms and private users, boosting innovation in the field of Sustainable Development Goals and in the disaster resilience policies.

The webinar will introduce EO-based applications in the water and disaster sector developed within the e-shape project and exemplify solutions that not only can support disaster resilience, raise awareness and risk response capability at the EU level, but can be integrated into users’ daily workflows.

The aim is to bring together research and scientist communities to discuss about opportunities and challenges, injecting knowledge exchanges on co-design methodologies to develop the operational uptake of mature EO-based services.  

Draft agenda


Annalisa Donati, Acting Secretary General EURISY- Introductory words


Francesca Piatto, Project Officer, European Association of Remote Sensing Companies (EARSC) – “The potential of satellite Earth Observation solutions in the disaster resilience: the e-shape project.


Dr. Ilias Pechlivanidis - Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI):  “Can earth observations evolve the water sector? Tailoring large-scale water services to address the user and market needs


Nikolaos Papagiannopoulos –Institute of Methodologies for Environmental Analysis (IMAA CNR):  “Integration of EO and model data for the monitoring of volcanic plumes critical to aviation operations         


Q&A Moderator: Annalisa Donati

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