The 2004 Boxing Day disaster drastically demonstrated the paramount need for a new generation of fast and reliable tsunami early warning systems in the Indian Ocean area and beyond. Since then substantial progress has been made to minimise the threats to human life caused by such ravaging events. With focus on Indonesia, the GITEWS project (German Indonesian Tsunami Early Warning System) started in 2005 and is performing very successful so far.
Based on the massive sensor networks installed in the scope of GITEWS, the DEWS project was created in order to design and implement an early warning system for the whole Indian Ocean and the adjacent countries based on open standards. Mainly funded by the EU, a consortium of 20 partners including public and private organisations from several EU member states and the International Cooperation Partner Countries Indonesia, Thailand and Sri Lanka are working closely together. The group is rounded by entities from New Zealand and Japan.