Welcome to UAViators

UAViators (You-Aviators)

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

With close to 3,000 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 500+ 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 provide professional training and aerial technologies directly to local partners in developing countries.

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

Mexico - Earthquake - September 2017

Hi All, an Operations page has just been set up for Mexico Earthquake: Mexico - Earthquake - September 2017 Pedro Matabuena, from Mexico City, has been assigned the coordination over the UAVs that are going to survey the affected áreas, standard emergency teams have managed to save some trapped civilians, but they could use UAVs equipped with infrared or similar cameras capable of looking for people under the debris. Please use the Ops page link above if you can help with this specific…

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6 Replies · Reply by Andrew Lustig yesterday

Transmitting Aerial Data in Remote Areas?

Dear All, Has anyone come across an economic, scalable and technically feasible way to transmit data captured by drones back to “base camp”? This continues to be a serious point of failure re deployment of drones for disaster response and in the context of Small Island States. If any one has solutions / partial solutions that work and meet the above criteria, would be very interested in learning more. Feel free to share using the comments section below. Many thanks, Patrick PS. We're also…

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52 Replies · Reply by Patrick Meier on Wednesday

Immediate Assistance required, Drone flying for Hurricane Irma

Hi there! I'm posting this message on behalf of the Netherlands Red Cross. Following Hurricane Irma, we are exploring the deployment of UAVs for the collection of imagery and post disaster mapping of St Maarten Island (Dutch Caribbean).  We are using DJI Mavic Pros and treating this exercise as a learning experience for future use of UAVs and as a valuable exercise on gathering imagery data in rapid emergencies.  We have been doing some experimenting with flying single and double grids and…

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1 Reply · Reply by Patrick Meier Sep 11


Mark D. Watkins, Justin H Adams and Sidney Nicholas Kung'u joined Humanitarian UAV Network
18 hours ago
Sara Ramos and Matthew Prizgint are now friends
Andre Samberg updated their profile
Andre Samberg updated their profile photo