The Humanitarian Village complements the official proceedings of the 2019 IFRC General Assembly, by giving participants an opportunity to have informal exchanges and tackle humanitarian challenges from fresh angles. A lively and interactive multimedia space inside the conference centre that will bring a hands-on, experimental and participatory aspect to the conference. Participants will be able to explore, test new ideas, share knowledge and experiences, and reach a deeper understanding of humanitarian issues and potential solutions. It will run throughout the IFRC General Assembly, the Council of Delegates and the International Conference and will include the following spaces:

  1. Networking space for informal, small group conversations and gathering
  2. RedTalk space, where participants will speak, present and debate with audience on topics relevant to the conference’s main themes
  3. Exhibition spaces where participants can display photo, audio-visual, promotional material, interactive installations, virtual reality etc.


Among others attending the sessions, Marike van Schaik and Juriaan Lahr presented directly to
Sigird Kaag Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation


Since 2016 the team at 510 have been working on ways to ensure data driven decisions are feasible in humanitarian aid. Whilst we knew it was possible we also knew that we needed to learn from and work within National Societies. We believe sharing our way of working together can help us move further with our mission, “to shape the future of humanitarian aid by converting data into understanding, put it in the hands of aid workers, decision-makers and people affected, so that they can better prepare for and cope with disasters and crises.”


Below are the slides of the presentation and the toppling information Jurian and Marike shared.

IFRC has put data and digital as one of the new transformations for the movement in the new Strategy 2030. NLRC has made data and digital as one of the key focus areas for the new international strategy, and will support the RCRC with data and digital services. Since 2016 the NLRC has invested in its data capacity through 510, the data team, which is now 100 people, both staff, students and volunteers. 510 has support over 30 national societies and has established 7 other data teams with our partner national societies.

A good example is the recent activation of the Forecast Based Financing system in the Philippines. The automated map for typhoon Tisoy, is a result of the integrated approach between Philippines Red Cross, IFRC, Climate Centre, National Society, 510, Local government, Local Met Services and other NGOs in the Philippines. A forecast model developed by 510 is the technical back bone of the forecast system. The system was triggered before the typhoon and the PRCS has taken early actions. The performance of this model is the first to be reviewed by UN OCHA HDX team, which has set up a predictive analytics review framework.


When developing more technical approaches to humanitarian aid, it’s important to localise these and to build capacity through training Data Teams of numerous national societies. To manage and maintain these, NLRC has supported national societies in developing a digital strategy and setting up seven data teams and cost-recovery models, and strengthening connections with universities to attract students and digital volunteers.

These data teams are leading the digital transformation of the national society. They will be trained to incorporate Human Centred Design in their services by co-designing with their end-users. To ensure that our humanitarian services are desirable, feasible and viable.

Digitalizing gives opportunities, but also risks. With our Data responsibility policy we think we should go beyond GDPR and also take ethical considerations in account. We need to be aware of digital inclusion / exclusion and not introduce new risks and vulnerabilities.
Data protection should be much more central in digitalising humanitarian aid and there is still insufficient investment in this. The RCRC the ICRC has been particularly strong on this, but all national societies should be strengthened on this topic. Particular attention should be on cash programming, where huge amounts of personal identifiable information are shared between organisations. This makes it very vulnerable. Good data practices start with data minimization and aggregation (only share what is really needed).

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