Annals of Operations Research

, Volume 283, Issue 1–2, pp 939–959 | Cite as

Big data and disaster management: a systematic review and agenda for future research

  • Shahriar AkterEmail author
  • Samuel Fosso Wamba
Applications of OR in Disaster Relief Operations, Part II


The era of big data and analytics is opening up new possibilities for disaster management (DM). Due to its ability to visualize, analyze and predict disasters, big data is changing the humanitarian operations and crisis management dramatically. Yet, the relevant literature is diverse and fragmented, which calls for its review in order to ascertain its development. A number of publications have dealt with the subject of big data and its applications for minimizing disasters. Based on a systematic literature review, this study examines big data in DM to present main contributions, gaps, challenges and future research agenda. The study presents the findings in terms of yearly distribution, main journals, and most cited papers. The findings also show a classification of publications, an analysis of the trends and the impact of published research in the DM context. Overall the study contributes to a better understanding of the importance of big data in disaster management.


Big data analytics Disaster management Humanitarian services Emergency services Systematic literature review 



The authors appreciate and gratefully acknowledge constructive comments and literature review support of Deepa Mishra (Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India), which improved the quality of our study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sydney Business SchoolUniversity of WollongongSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Toulouse Business SchoolToulouseFrance

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