Twitter Speaks: A Case of National Disaster Situational Awareness

Document Type



In recent years, we have been faced with a series of natural disasters causing a tremendous amount of financial, environmental and human losses. The unpredictable nature of natural disasters behaviour makes it hard to have a comprehensive situational awareness (SA) to support disaster management. Using opinion surveys is a traditional approach to analyse public concerns during natural disasters; however, this approach is limited, expensive and time-consuming. Luckily, the advent of social media has provided scholars with an alternative means of analysing public concerns. Social media enable users (people) to freely communicate their opinions and disperse information regarding current events including natural disasters. This research emphasises the value of social media analysis and proposes an analytical framework: Twitter Situational Awareness (TwiSA). This framework uses text mining methods including sentiment analysis and topic modelling to create a better SA for disaster preparedness, response and recovery. TwiSA has also effectively deployed on a large number of tweets and tracks the negative concerns of people during the 2015 South Carolina flood.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

APA Citation

Karami A., Shah V., Vaezi R., Bansal A. (2020). Twitter Speaks: A Case of National Disaster Situational Awareness, Journal of Information Science 46(3), 313-324.