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2018 Philly Mapathon

Last year, about 65 volunteers gathered to put over 9,000 buildings on a map to be used by the Clinton Health Access Initiative for planning anti-malaria measures in Zimbabwe.

We listened to your feedback and we're ready to get together for another Philly Mapathon during Philly Tech Week! We're going bigger and better this year - we're aiming to increase our impact and we need your help!

Join us for this free event where your contributions will go directly to nonprofits to be used for navigation, planning, and disaster response. Read more below for details like what you need to bring, what you'll get as a volunteer, and how you can help others if you're an experienced mapper.

What is a Mapathon?

The Philly Mapathon follows the event structure of the Missing Maps Project, a collaborative effort between the American Red Cross, British Red Cross, Médecins Sans Frontières-UK, and the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team to map areas of the world in need. A Mapathon is a chance for people to get together to map priority areas of the world - we can make significant contributions in a short amount of time by working simultaneously.

What will you do?

During the Philly Mapathon, you’ll trace features like roads and buildings on a satellite image basemap. Don’t worry, we’ll teach you everything you need to know when you get to the event. No experience is necessary. Anyone with a passion for volunteering, philanthropy, or helping others can participate!

However, experienced mapping professionals are welcome and encouraged to attend the event!

Please fill out this form if you would like to be a Mapping Mentor and help others learn how to use OSM on the day of the event.

You can come for any amount of time from 5:00PM to 9:00PM.

What you need for the event:

  • a laptop (mouse optional, but encouraged)

What we’ll supply:

  • food and beverages
  • access to power outlets
  • free wifi access
  • instructions and resources to help you succeed

Why is this event right for you?

  1. Different than a typical speaker/audience event - hang out with an enthusiastic team of volunteers as you help communities in need!
  2. No in-depth technical knowledge required - just bring a computer and we’ll get you started mapping areas across the world!
  3. Go home feeling great at the end of the night - your contributions during the event will help people receive relief and aid from organizations like The Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders.

Additional Information about the Missing Maps Project

The Missing Maps Process:

Step 1: Remote volunteers trace satellite imagery into OpenStreetMap [ <— Philly Mapathon! ]

Step 2: Community volunteers add local detail such as neighborhoods, street names, and evacuation centers

Step 3: Humanitarian organizations used mapped information to plan risk reduction and disaster response activities that save lives

Event Sponsors

Presented by: Azavea

With support from: Humanitarian OpenStreetMapTeam & Missing Maps Project


Visit azavea.com/directions for information about public transportation, bicycle storage, and parking.

Want to join the Philly Mapathon organizational team or become a Mapping Mentor? Fill out this form to let us know how you want to get involved!


990 Spring Garden Street, 5th Floor 19123
Map of location


  • Azavea
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