Oxfam’s new policy on biometrics explores safe and responsible data practice

James Eaton-Lee ICT4D, Protection

By James Eaton-Lee and Elizabeth Shaughnessy  The collection and processing of biometric data – data which is linked to the human body or its behaviour – such as fingerprints or facial recognition – has become significantly more common in humanitarian contexts worldwide in the last five years.  Few donors or large INGOs have not had a position on biometric data or had some experience rolling this out. But this …

Launching our new training course: Why Data Rights Matter

James Eaton-Lee ICT4D

This month we’ve released our “Why Data Rights Matter” training course.  We believe the course will make substantial impact to uphold commitments to make safe, rights-based use of data, and that it is a bridge to further collaboration in this area.  Background  Oxfam was proud to be an early participant in the Responsible Data movement, publishing our Responsible Program Data Policy in 2015. In it, we outlined a …

The future is bright for digital accountability

Emily Tomkys Valteri ICT4D, Research

Reflections from Programme Manager, Emily Tomkys Valteri on the Your Word Counts Programme as the Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF) Responsive Listening through Improved Feedback Mechanisms Project ends. The Your Word Counts programme has sought to strengthen accountability through feedback mechanisms which are safe, confidential and trustworthy. Beginning as a small HIF pilot in Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan, this grew …

Betting on blockchain to deliver cash in the Pacific

Sandra Uwantege Hart Cash transfers, Disasters, ICT4D, Innovation

Sandra Uwantege Hart, Pacific Cash & Livelihoods Lead, describes how Oxfam successfully used blockchain technology to make cash accessible to communities and small businesses in Vanuatu – one of the world’s most remote and hazard-prone locations. We are told that blockchain technology will change the world – harnessing a decentralised, distributed ledger, removing expensive middlemen and resolving core issues of …

Understanding community needs: taking a human-centred design approach to reporting misconduct

Emily Tomkys Valteri ICT4D, Research

Programme Manager, Emily Tomkys Valteri builds on the previous blog, Safeguarding: Communities trust in our ability to listen, react and respond is key. Together with Sonder Collective, Oxfam is working on a research initiative dedicated to better understanding misconduct reporting. This research will build capacity to incorporate human-centred design principles into this process. It will seek to map user journeys of community members …

Technology and inequality

Claire Spoors Gender & Development Journal, ICT4D, Inequality, Participation and Leadership

We are at a crossroads on the digital highway. Advocacy Adviser, Claire Spoors highlights some key themes for the international development sector to consider when thinking about the intersection of technology and inequality. Recent World Bank estimates reveal that reducing inequality is a more effective way to eradicate poverty than increasing a country’s annual growth rate. Oxfam’s Fighting inequality to …

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

Muthoni Maingi Gender, ICT4D Leave a Comment

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 Gender, Gender & Development Journal, ICT4D Leave a Comment

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 …