Welcoming & agenda introduction
Charlotte Pierrat, CartONG
The arrival of innovative methods and new technologies for the management of information and data have brought a new dynamic to humanitarian action in the past ten years. These new tools have enabled organizations to be more effective in their understanding, managing and processing of data for decision-making. Employing mobile phones, sensor based technology, drones and crowdsourcing for data collection, as well as developing tools for advanced analysis and visualization, have brought a new range of options that significantly assist humanitarian interventions in becoming more efficient. Traditionally, the approach towards information management in organizations has been very much hands-on, with humanitarians collecting information manually and direct community outreach. As such, it is worth asking what the impact of these new tools has been- not only for Organization HQs and donors, for which only the benefits are apparent- but also for field staff and targeted communities. How can we seize the benefits of the data revolution we are witnessing? Do new tools make humanitarian organizations more result-driven and cost-efficient in the long-run? What about the perceptions of those who receive aid, do they experience faster and more efficient assistance, freeing up resources to allow organizations to engage on effective communication and getting beneficiaries’ feedback? If so, how is this impacting the humanitarian sector itself?
Sandra Sudhoff (CartONG)
As a technical director, Sandra leads the CartONG team ensuring that the NGO functions, stays on course, and delivers quality work. As an Information Management and Project Manager, Sandra supervises and implements the MDC and IM dimensions of collaborative projects. Originally a landscape planner and architect, Sandra came across GIS and Remote Sensing while working on her thesis in Mozambique for the GIZ and got hooked on it ever since. After completing a Master's Degree in GIS & Remote Sensing she had a short stint mapping powerline transmission routes for the private sector before she returned to the humanitarian field and joined CartONG in 2007 just after its creation. Her first long mission to Uganda convinced her to stay.
Andrej Verity (DHN - OCHA)
Andrej Verity is an information management officer at the United Nations (UN) Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Geneva, Switzerland. Between emergencies, his focus is on supporting OCHA's information management staff around the world and leading OCHA's collaboration with the volunteer and technical communities. Verity has been working in the information management field for over 13 years, with the last 7 in the humanitarian realm. In 2010, he deployed to both the Haiti earthquake and the Pakistan floods. Throughout the year, he spent time reflecting on his experiences, trying to find ways to improve disaster information management, aiding in the development of the Disaster Relief 2.0 from Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, and having an open dialog with several volunteer and technical communities entities.
Mathieu Soupart (MSF)
Since June 2014, Mathieu Soupart is the Director of Logistics of MSF (Doctors Without Borders) – at the Geneva operational center. Since 2008, he was heading the Technical Support to the Operations service within the same department which he fully created and developed, participating regularly in the launch of several key disaster operations in the field. In parallel, Mathieu created and is still overseeing the GIS (geographical information service) Unit that became the leading unit in support to the whole MSF Movement.
A naval architecture civil engineer by training, he has a master’s in Disaster Management from the University of Wisconsin and followed numerous professional courses in the area of crisis management, rescue and relief operations. He was also a lecturer at the University of Louvain on Humanitarian Action Logistics. Starting in 1993 as an emergency logistician first with the Red Cross / ICRC he joined MSF in 1995, he worked several years with the NGO in the field in major relief operations. He then created the Logistics department of Handicap International in Brussels, before taking on the responsibility for Mine action in the same organization and then as Head of Sector in ICRC until 2006, after which Mathieu returned to MSF.
Kimberly Roberson (UNHCR)
Kimberly is currently chief of Field Information and Coordination of UNHCR. She has more than 25 years working with UNHCR, including in the management of information to provide timely and efficient assistance to populations of concern within the organization. She has an advanced degree from Clark University in International Development and Geographic Information Systems. She has applied this knowledge in a variety of refugee, humanitarian and development situations with extensive work around the globe.
Manuel Galea (IRIS)
IRIS Research Fellow since 2016, Manuel GALEA is responsible for the Humanitarian and Development Program strategy implementation. His main area of research is the transformation of the humanitarian sector. He promotes the idea of using an approach mixing social anthropology and Quality management to address the changes the sector is currently going through. After a PhD in Languages, Literatures and Civilisations (University of Lorraine – 2009), he occupied several positions within Argus de la presse, a media-monitoring company (2010-2015).