Disaster rescue is one of the most serious social issue which involves very large numbers of heterogeneous agents in the hostile environment. The intention of the RoboCupRescue project is to promote research and development in this socially significant domain at various levels involving multi-agent team work coordination, physical robotic agents for search and rescue, information infrastructures, personal digital assistants, a standard simulator and decision support systems, evaluation benchmarks for rescue strategies and robotic systems that are all integrated into a comprehensive systems in future.