Representing the ICT4Peace Foundation, I will be part of a panel organised by the Humanitarian Law and Policy Forum at Harvard University looking at how, if at all, ICTs have strengthened humanitarian aid. The guiding questions of this web based seminar echo concerns, challenges and opportunities I have repeatedly raised on this blog for years. Some … Continue reading ICT and Protection: Can Information and Communication Technology Enhance Humanitarian Action?
Boomers had the zipless fuck. We have the clickless give. With a line like that, you know the article you're reading is going to be irreverent, intelligent and incisive. How Twitter + Dopamine = Better Humans by Scott Brown on Wired is all three. It is also a cogent critique of the generation of humanitarian … Continue reading Dopamine and humanitarian aid
Almost a year ago, in the immediate aftermath of Cyclone Nargis, myself and others at the ICT4Peace Foundation were copied to a spate of emails that included voices from inter-governmental, non-governmental, private business and commercial organisations, academia, former field level practitioners and others on how best to respond to the monumental challenges of information and … Continue reading Cyclone Nargis: Lessons and implications for ICTs in Humanitarian Aid
Paul Currion has a very interesting post that cuts through a whole lot of codswallop on the potential of crowsourcing in disasters. His pointed post refers to two by Patrick Meier, entitled Internews, Ushahidi and communication in crisis and Ushahidi: From Croudsourcing to Crowdfeeding I consider both to be significant thought-leaders in the domains of humanitarian … Continue reading Cutting through crowdsourcing
Eduardo Jezierski, the brilliant Director of Engineering from INSTEDD and I recently exchanged some emails about the usefulness and advisability of Facebook as a platform for humanitarian aid. First some context. The conversation arose after I emailed him details of the BBC's recent expose of Facebok's flaws with its applications platform / framework, which is … Continue reading Facebook for humanitarian aid?
Paul Currion's blog post in response to one on the ICT4Peace Foundation that appeared recently in Fortune Magazine is delicious food for thought. There are a whole range of questions and challenges Paul addresses and proposes, of which I thought I would respond to a few in my capacity as a practitioner of ICT4Peace in … Continue reading Questions on ICT4Peace: A response to Paul Currion
The UN +5 OCHA Symposium was another instance where the power of new media (Web 2.0, blogs, podcasts, vodcasts, wikis, SMSs and that sort of thing) was repeatedly touted as an innovation that would change the face of humanitarian response as we know it. The heady optimism of a revolution in humanitarian affairs using mobile … Continue reading New media mantras
Missing entirely in the discussions I was part of at the UN OCHA +5 Symposium and also the draft statement current on the Symposium website for public review is the manner in which complex political emergencies (CPEs, herein used to also cover violent ethno-political conflict) influence the design and deployment of ICT support architectures and … Continue reading Complex Political Emergencies and humanitarian aid systems design
One of the discussions that cropped up in the working group on Innovation and also at the Plenary at the UN OCHA +5 Symposium was the ethics of information sharing in humanitarian aid systems. I for one find it hard to believe that we are bereft of the information needed for timely and sustainable humanitarian … Continue reading Humanitarian information systems: Ethics, information protection and “information DNA”
Linked to UN OCHA +5 Symposium - Where was the innovation?, I thought of listing some practices, technologies and their application in the field that interest me because of their potential for augmenting peacebuilding and conflict transformation, that I believe has broad overlap with the imperatives of humanitarian aid. While none of the examples below … Continue reading Innovation in humanitarian aid – Herein lies the future