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Problems from Hell, Solution in the Heavens?: Identifying Obstacles and Opportunities for Employing Geospatial Technologies to Document and Mitigate Mass Atrocities

Ben Yunmo Wang, Gabrielle Gould
Oct 2013

At the evolving frontier of modern humanitarianism, non-governmental organizations are using satellite technology to monitor mass atrocities. As a documentation tool, satellites have the potential to collect important real-time evidence for alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity. However, the field remains experimental and ill-defined, while useful court evidence cannot be produced without a standard methodology and code of ethics. In this paper, members of the groundbreaking Satellite Sentinel Project review the historical development of satellite documentation and some of its landmark projects, and propose necessary measures to advance the field forward.