“To be frank, I entered the competition to win the US$50,000 for our country, and
I hope that my win encourages more Filipinos to contribute to making the online map
of our country even better. We Filipinos are known for our spirit of bayanihan, and this
is a great way for us to come together in the Internet era to make life better for our fellow
kababayans by literally putting their communities on the digital map.”
- Wayne Dell Manuel
Wayne Dell Manuel, a 23-year-old “citizen cartographer” from the University of the Philippines, was adjudged as the first Google Map Maker Global Competition. Manuel won over 700 other contestants. He won a US$50,000 donation from UNICEF for the Philippines. Manuel won by adding more than 1,500 qualifying map features and made hundreds of moderations in Google Map Maker. His feat was considered as the most numerous and accurate entries in the contest.
The competition served as an encouragement to help humanitarian organizations to improve the delivery of services, respond to crisis, and adapt to changes in the countries they operate by enabling access to accurate digital maps. To have a more useful Google Map, users were asked to map universities, schools, hospitals and medical clinics in their home countries.
Manuel, a software developer at the UP National Telehealth Center, now belongs to the top 10 all-time mappers with nearly 35,000 map edits and according to him, he doesn’t have any plans of stopping. He vowed to continue editing in Google Map Maker even after the competition because there are still many unmapped areas in the Philippines.