Development Data Partnership at the World Bank Annual Meetings

Mikel Maron
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Oct 13, 2020

Development Data Partnership at the World Bank Annual Meetings

Mikel Maron
No items found.

Oct 13, 2020

Sharing Mapbox Movement data

Mapbox is honored to be at the World Bank Annual Meetings to mark the importance of sharing data to solve tough problems (watch here). Through the Development Data Partnership, we’ve collaborated with economic development experts to improve access to health care during the pandemic in Senegal and Indonesia, prioritize infrastructure investments for the tourism sector in Sri Lanka, and determine the vulnerability of populations under COVID-19 lockdown across India. Inspired by these partnerships, we have released Mapbox Movement data from January to August 2020 covering the USA, Germany, and UK, and India. This data is immediately available for all Mapbox users, with India to be available shortly.


In this data release, and all our data products, we prioritize privacy — we minimize and anonymize the data that we do collect, take additional steps to prevent re-identification, encrypt data in transit and at rest, and apply strong access control. We only use location data to make our products better and to provide user benefits in our maps. This Movement data is now available to help tackle global challenges to health, environment, and livelihoods.

"The pandemic has revealed how timely and granular information routinely collected by the private sector can be critical to optimize government responses. For international organizations like the World Bank, partnering with private firms on public good projects can be slow and challenging for a range of legal, technical, business, and ethical issues. We started the Development Data Partnership to address these issues head on. It has not been easy, and we are grateful for the patience and support of partners like Mapbox to help make the Partnership program a reality."

 — Holly Krambeck, Economist and Program Manager for the Development Data Partnership at the World Bank

Economists at the World Bank understand the value of data. When it comes to our leaders around the world, COVID is making clear the dramatically different paths of communities that have the resources to make data-driven decisions and those that don’t. That’s why the best data also need to be available directly for those communities to drive forward-moving progress. With the right data and insights, civil society around the world can inform, advocate, and hold decision-makers accountable.

What’s unique about the Data Partnership is how fast we’ve moved into real conversations and work on the problems that the World Bank teams are grappling with. By bringing experts in health and transport, economists, and geospatial technologists to the same table, we can quickly assess the technology and data options and iterate to workable solutions. Here are a few projects from over the last year.

Traditionally, the collection of traffic data has relied on either labor intensive methods or fixed sensors. The World Bank took a more efficient approach in Sri Lanka. They used Mapbox Traffic data to model which road improvements would most reduce travel time to Sri Lanka’s incredible tourist sites.The model found that there are only 2.97 kilometers of roads that could reduce single trip travel times and significantly benefit the tourism sector. The unexpected conclusion of this analysis is that for the greatest return, investment should not be focused on the road network, but rather directly at entrances and parking areas of tourist sites.

India is particularly vulnerable to high transmission rates of the coronavirus. Over 100M people live in informal settlements, where they face significant challenges to social distancing and sanitation. By analyzing Mapbox Movement data with data on COVID-19 disease dynamics and underlying vulnerabilities within populations, we can construct a rich understanding of the impacts of the lockdowns particularly in India’s most vulnerable areas.

To answer the question of where the greatest need for medical facilities in Senegal, Spain, Indonesia, and the Philippines during the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Bank analyzed Facebook Population Data against open data on health facilities from governments and OpenStreetMap. Taking population centers as starting points and health facilities as destinations, analysts used the Mapbox Matrix API to map at a national scale how far away anyone is from their closest health facility when traveling by road. The analysis highlights unserved populations and points to where investments are needed.

Work with Movement data

Working with the World Bank has helped us make Movement better. We want to work with anyone facing tough data challenges. Get Movement data here and reach out to the Community team to explore how we can support. For teams at the World Bank, IADB, and IMF, make requests through the Development Data Partnership for any of our global data sets or APIs, and we’ll connect to see how we can help.

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