As we celebrate 40 years of the Landsat era of Earth observations from space, rapid development of new satellite technologies that makes high-resolution imagery more widely accessible to end-users within and outside governments—combined with proliferation of open-data and crowd-sourcing ('crowd-mapping') tools, requires the development community to keep abreast with emerging opportunities and implications for project design, implementation and monitoring that can be made more precise, efficient, transparent and inclusive.

The seminar, organized jointly by the World Bank Institute (WBI) and the World Bank's Sustainable Development Network (SDN), in partnership with the World Resources Institute (WRI), will feature two new programs that illustrate these new frontiers.

  • Open Landscape Partnership Platform is a joint initiative of ScanEx R&D Center, a major satellite data services company from Russia, WBI, WRI and others, which aims to broaden access to high-resolution (0.5 m) satellite imagery for interested stakeholders, such as local partnerships of universities and land managers working across jurisdictions on crowd-mapping, spatial planning, and monitoring of critical landscapes and hotspots.

  • Global Forest Watch 2.0 is an innovative program of WRI with Google, ESRI, Imazon, Scanex and others that aims to harness the power of global satellite data sets and put it at the disposal of the general public in "almost real time", on a roughly bi-weekly basis, to monitor global and regional forest cover dynamics and develop thematic applications such as e.g. wildlife habitat monitoring.


  • Olga Gershenzon, Vice President, ScanEx R&D Center (Russia)

  • Lars Laestadius, Senior Associate, World Resources Institute


  • Reza Firuzabadi, Senior Team Leader, SDN Information Services, World Bank

  • Anthony Bigio, Senior Urban Specialist, Urban and Disaster Risk Management, World Bank

  • Dmitry Zaviralov, GIS Open Data Specialist, Innovation Labs, World Bank Institute (Participating via video conference)