Technological advancements to support humanitarian aid
With the increasing number of people in need of humanitarian assistance, technological advancements promise to support aid policy makers with more reliable information and field-friendly decision support tools. However, technology is not neutral and the progress of using technological advancements has been slow in the field. The potential impact of using technological advancements in humanitarian aid should be carefully assessed with respect to the dignity, inclusiveness, and rights of targeted people, the effects on the environment and sustainability of location, the involvement of local people and businesses in interventions, and the resilience of the community. Yet, considering these aspects results in a complex dynamic system with several stakeholders, actors, connections, . Studying this system, therefore, requires a transdisciplinary multimethod approach.
The cluster “Technological advancements to support humanitarian aid” is composed of eight researchers with backgrounds in technology, social sciences, economics, and policy analysis with expertise in ethnography, case study, system dynamics, mathematical modelling, multi criteria decision analysis, and econometrics. With a successful history of several nationally and internationally funded projects, the research cluster actively contributes to the theory and practice of humanitarian operations management in close collaboration with practitioners from small and large organizations such as the Strømme Foundation, Norwegian Research Council, Danish Refugee Council, UNHCR, UN World Food Programme, Engineers Without Borders, OXFAM, and many others. The cluster researchers participate regularly in national and international academic and practitioners-oriented conferences and gatherings to present their latest research findings.
The following areas are of interest for cluster’s researchers:
In-kind logistics and supply chain management
Development projects in the context of African countries
Localization and decolonization of aid
Circular economy and sustainability in humanitarian interventions