Name: Pierluigi Sinibaldi
Organization: OXFAM America
Functional Title: Disaster Risk Reduction Specialist
Country: USA
Course participated in: 13th International Course on GIS for Disaster Risk Management

Pierluigi Sinibaldi is a Resilience and Disaster Risk Reduction Specialist at OXFAM America. He took a course on Geographic Information Systems (GIS) with UNITAR’s Operational Satellite Applications Programme (UNOSAT).

Pierluigi has worked in the humanitarian sector since 2002 in a variety of areas, including food security, emergency response, and disaster risk reduction. His current work involves disaster preparedness, long-term recovery and resilience at Oxfam. He works with governments and local partners in Central America and the Asia-Pacific region, building capacity on needs assessment, market-based interventions, and contingency planning, to ensure that governments and civil society are ready to respond to disasters.

He took the course to enhance his technical understanding of GIS and because he felt that it had potential applications in his work at Oxfam, such as how it could be used along the disaster risk management cycle, including preparedness, impact assessment, relief, and recovery.

He says that Oxfam still has a lot of knowledge to acquire on GIS: “We don’t have much internal capacity on it… We miss a lot of opportunities to use technology in a positive way.” However, he is confident that he can share his knowledge with his colleagues: “Some skills can be repeated and shared, like impact assessment using satellite images, that is quite easy to reapply.” He was glad that beyond learning about GIS, the course taught him that he could advocate for the use of new technology at Oxfam.

Pierluigi had endless praise for the course: “It was one of the best trainings I’ve ever had.” He spoke highly of the facilitator, Khaled, who mixed theory with field experience and was “very adaptive and flexible.” He was also impressed by the communication material and the guide he was given, which allowed him to reapply what he was taught. He has been spreading the word at Oxfam: “It was really amazing, sincerely… I recommended it to my colleagues.”

“My work has given me the opportunity to meet people globally, and to feel helpful… I cannot see other work right now that would give me the same reward as this… For me, it is really fulfilling.”

He hopes to continue his work in disaster risk management: “It’s a field I’m really excited to work in.”

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