Welcome to UAViators

UAViators (You-Aviators)

"Humanitarian organizations should engage in initiatives like the Humanitarian UAV Network."
          - United Nations (OCHA) Policy Brief 

With over 3,200 members in 120+ countries, our mission is to promote the safe, coordinated and effective use of UAVs for data collection and cargo delivery in a wide range of humanitarian and development settingsWe do this by developing and championing international guidelines for the responsible use of UAVs. We actively promote operational safety and document lessons learned and best practices. We never self-deploy. We only mobilize at the request of established aid and development partners. We actively promote community engagement & educate UAV operators. We convene Experts Meetings and facilitate information sharing, coordination and learning across all our efforts. Our pilot roster includes 600+ UAV pilots in 70+ countries.

Our objectives are thus five-fold: establish clear standards for the responsible use of UAVs and provide up-to-date regulatory information; document lessons learned and best practices; provide hands-on UAV training; inform UAV deployments during disasters; and catalyze research & information sharing. To pursue these objectives, we co-organized the first ever Humanitarian UAV Experts Meeting at the UN Secretariat in 2014 and held this meeting again in 2015 at MIT. We taught the first ever Humanitarian UAV training courses in Europethe US and Asia for humanitarian and development professionals. In addition, we convened a high-level policy forum supported by the Rockefeller Foundation to further develop our international code of conduct. We also joined the Drones in Humanitarian Action research program in 2015. In 2016, we launched WeRobotics to take over the operational responsibilities of UAViators and provide professional training and aerial technologies directly to local partners in developing countries. In 2018, we launched a dedciated website for the Humanitarian UAV Code of Conduct: UAVcode.org.

To get started:

  1. Please sign up (the private site has member-only features).
  2. Complete your profile and Start Here to make the most of your membership.
  3. Use the Email-List if you're looking for direct input.
  4. Post announcements to the Forum
  5. Read, improve and share our Code of Conduct and Best Practices Guide.
  6. If you're a pilot, please join the Pilot Roster here.

New! Founder Patrick Meier's new TEDx talk on Humanitarian UAVs. See also his book, Digital Humanitarians, which has been praised by experts at Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Oxford, United Nations, Red Cross, Work Bank and more. The book features members of UAViators in action.


Global Forum

Let's get more systematic about sharing mapping drone recipes!

Hi all,    I want to propose something a bit more systematic in our approach to creating the open drone mapping platforms I think we all want to see.   I think we're very close to being able to create a very low-cost, capable mapping drone with hobbyist-level (and price) parts with fully open recipes and software. The more I look at the platforms costing thousands of dollars, and even tens of thousands of dollars, the more I am convinced that what is on sale is often $200 to $500 worth of parts…

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4 Replies · Reply by Hamady C. Dec 29, 2018

Disaster Response in the Philippines

Greetings! I'm from the Philippines, I started an initiative in 2013 called Bike Scouts Project. We work as volunteer bicycle messengers that help provide an alternative means of communication in the aftermath of severe natural disasters and we help collect data and document the impact of natural disasters. We use bicycles to transport portable technology we carry like solar kits, mobile devices, satellite phones, and UAVs/Drones that help us cover a large amount of ground without having to…

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2 Replies · Reply by Ben Chatwin Dec 5, 2018

How have you got round poor communications links in disaster response?

Hi, I'm interested in the use of drones in disaster response imapcat assessments, and am wondering how people hav got round the issue of uploading their data to cloud platforms when there is poor internet links, which you tend to get in some disasters? I've been finding that the size of the files created, and temperamentality of internet connections can be a big hindrance. Has anyone got any suggestions?   Many thanks,   Graham

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0 Replies


Michael Andrew Manalili updated their profile
Feb 1
Hi! I am an advocate of open geospatial data. Lets us contribute by sharing our drone images at OpenAerialMap (https://map.openaerialmap.org/#/) so others can make full use of our data (if appropriate data license and data privacy permits). Thanks f…
Rene Clough is now a member of Humanitarian UAV Network
Jan 18
Irshad Khan updated their profile
Jan 16
Maria Bonnefont-Cobo, Monty Lynn and Jeremiah Ogunla joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Jan 16
Joshua Wojnas, Ian Crowston, Paul Neely and 2 more joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Jan 7
Paul Neely updated their profile
Dec 29, 2018
christopher schaefer, Peter Bo Hansen, Dongmin Lee and 7 more joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Dec 21, 2018
christopher schaefer updated their profile
Dec 21, 2018
Marcel Reidock updated their profile
Dec 19, 2018
Otto T. Farkas updated their profile photo
Dec 9, 2018
Otto T. Farkas updated their profile
Dec 9, 2018
Emily Yoon, Rachel Chung and Albert Brice Messé joined Humanitarian UAV Network
Dec 3, 2018
John McBride updated their profile
Nov 28, 2018
Sheen Hunter updated their profile
Nov 26, 2018
Andrea Cippà updated their profile photo
Nov 26, 2018