Ushahidi is an open-source platform that allows information collection through multiple sources such as SMS, email, RSS feeds, web apps and Twitter. The collected data can be used to build maps and charts, generate reports that can include time lines or workflows and send automatic alerts. An Android and iOS app is also available allowing to integrate offline data collection to the platform. Platform usage suggested from system developers includes: Election Monitoring, Crisis Response, and Advocacy & Human Rights.
Market Suggested Retail Price
Distributors / Implementing Organizations
Intellectural Property Type
User Provision Model
Distributions to Date Status
The release bundles are pre-built compressed files. It does not required further building or downloading. These file bundles are available from the platform-release repository in Github. Installation instructions assume that users know how to create a database in a MySQL server and obtain user credentials with access to such database. The instructions and example commands are written specifically for Debian Linux or a derivative of it (Ubuntu, Mint, etc). It might be required to make adjustments if the user is installing on a different Linux, or a different OS. Ushahidi provides a complete step-by-step guide on how to use the Ushahidi Platform. It is possible to install the platform in different web servers. An Internet connection is required to access content on Ushahidi platform. The latest version of Ushahidi app does not require the user to have a permanent connection: data can be locally collected and stored for upload it when connection is available again. Users with sms, twitter, RSS feeds, email or web app need basic 2G connection to send data to platform. Transifex is used to translate to several languages the platform.
Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters
Vetted Performance Status
World Vision UK used Ushahidi to aggregate contextual evidence from both response teams and social media in real-time, to receive data from SMS, social media, and websites, for users to filter and analyse reports and data available. With support from the World Peace Foundation at Tufts University, in South Sudan a list of over 4000 victims has been gathered, using Ushahidi platform in which civilians send information about the subject. The Center for Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance (CFE-DMHA) used Ushahidi platform to aggregate and transparently map all the disaster management training events in the Asia-Pacific region that is open for anyone to use.
Complementary Technical Systems
Academic Research and References
Pánek, J., Marek, L., Pászto, V., Val?ch, J., 2017, The Crisis Map of the Czech Republic: the nationwide deployment of an Ushahidi application for disasters, Disaster Journal, Volume 41, Issue 4, October 2017, Pages 649-671
Mora, F., 2011, Innovating in the midst of crisis: A case study of Ushahidi
Banks, K., Hersman, E., 2009, FrontlineSMS and Ushahidi – a demo, International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development (ICTD), Doha, 2009, pp. 484-484
Marsden, J., 2013, Stigmergic self-organization and the improvisation of Ushahidi,
Cognitive Systems Research, Volume 21, Pages 52-64, ISSN 1389-0417
Macdonell, C., 2015, Ushahidi: a crisis mapping system, SIGCAS Comput. Soc. 45, Pages 2-38
Land, M., Meier, P., Belinsky, M., Jacobi, E., 2012, #ICT4HR: Information and Communication Technologies for Human Rights, World Bank Institute, Nordic Trust Fund, Open Development Technology Alliance, and ICT4Gov
Hirata, E., Giannotti, M.A., Larocca, A. P. C., Quintanilha, J.A., 2018, Flooding and inundation collaborative mapping – use of the Crowdmap/Ushahidi platform in the city of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Journal of Flood Risk Management, Volume 11, Issue S1, January 2018, Pages S98-S109
Compliance with regulations
It is required to comply with local regulations on data privacy. The platform includes field level privacy controls as part of the survey system.