Google on Thursday said that it is working with UNICEF to map the spread of Zika and pitching in a million dollars to support the group’s efforts on the ground.
A volunteer team of Google engineers, designers and data scientists is helping UNICEF build a computer platform to analyze data from sources such as weather and travel patterns to predict potential outbreaks, the director of the Internet giant’s charitable arm said in a blog post.
“Ultimately, the goal of this open source platform is to identify the risk of Zika transmission for different regions and help UNICEF, governments and NGO’s decide how and where to focus their time and resources,” said Google.org director Jacquelline Fuller. “This set of tools is being prototyped for the Zika response, but will also be applicable to future emergencies.” The million-dollar grant to UNICEF was intended to go toward cutting mosquito populations; developing diagnostics and vaccines; awareness, and prevention, according to Fuller. Read more