#TechWomenAfrica: Connected women and youth-bridging the digital divide

Muthoni Maingi, Head of Digital Campaigns at Oxfam International, reflects on the challenges for gender equality in online spaces and her recent visit to the #TechWomenAfrica conference.  Earlier this month I had the privilege of attending the #TechWomenAfrica conference held in Accra, Ghana. The meeting convened over 250 women and girls from across the continent to discuss solutions for unlocking …

Beyond a phone in your pocket: feminist analysis of the digital age

Amy O’Donnell, a specialist on digital technologies at Oxfam and Board member of anti-harassment charity Hollaback!, outlines the Gender & Development Journal’s new ICTs issue and two launch events.  Having a phone in your pocket isn’t necessarily as empowering and life-changing as it’s cracked up to be. Development actors are having a passionate moment with ICTs right now, and certainly digital offers …

Improving data quality with digital data collection

Emily Tomkys Valteri, Alexia Pretari and Simone Lombardini share practical tips to help improve quality in survey data collection, and introduce the latest case study in the ‘Going Digital’ series. Sometimes survey data doesn’t add up: two household members are married to each other and yet have different marital statuses, consent statements have not been fully read, percentages of income …

What can blockchain do for the humanitarian sector?

Nicole Hahn and Josh Hallwright from Oxfam Australia explain why they are excited about the possibilities which blockchain systems offer to improve the effectiveness of aid to the poorest people. It seems as though everyone is talking about cryptocurrencies and blockchain these days and the humanitarian sector is no different. Plenty of people say the whole thing is over-hyped, only …

Technology in humanitarian programming: agility vs standardisation

Laura Eldon and Anna Kondakhchyan reflect on how new technologies are used in humanitarian work, and share learning from Oxfam’s experiences.  Here at Oxfam, we are passionate about the potential for new technologies to support the delivery of high quality field activities. Crucially, we believe in taking a ‘responsible’ approach to the use of Information Communication Technologies (or ICTs). Essentially …

Using tech for feedback and complaints in Gaza and the West Bank

Oxfam in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel is trialling the use of a mobile tool to collect, manage and respond to feedback. Nahed Natsheh outlines the benefits of using this technology. Using information communication technology (ICT) for data collection is not new to Oxfam in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel (OPTI), but we have never before used it …

Questioning the use of biometric technology in humanitarian response

Anna Kondakhchyan shares the findings of new research, Biometrics in the Humanitarian Sector, which looks into the benefits and risks of using biometric technology to register people to receive humanitarian aid. How would you feel if refusal to submit your biometric data meant you were excluded from the provision of humanitarian assistance? Biometrics, the measurement of human characteristics through technology such …