Tech to save lives
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How Humanitarians Use Tech to Save Lives

Technology has changed the way we interact with the world and with one another. It has allowed many people around the world to improve their quality of life drastically. Technology has also brought forth life-saving innovation in medicine and sciences. So why not use technology to save lives in the humanitarian sector? And that’s precisely what many humanitarians are doing today. Here are some ways humanitarians use tech to save lives.

The ultimate humanitarian traveling list

Data for Good

The world collects tons of data daily. There are many ways in which it can be used. For example, governments use it for decision-making. Meanwhile, marketing agencies use data for their campaigns. In the case of humanitarians, data is essential, particularly in disaster response.

By analyzing real-time data, humanitarian organizations can optimize their deployments and actions after disasters. For example, they can receive real-time information and leverage activities with other organizations. Learn more about data for good.

Biometric Data

One type of data is particularly useful for humanitarian response in biometric data. It is frequently used for aid distribution and in refugee camps. Since many people might lack documentation, using biometric data can streamline distribution processes. It can also help an organization curb fraud and prevent errors in distribution processes. Learn more about biometric data and humanitarian aid.

Satellite Information

Another technology that helps with assessments is satellite information. Many humanitarian organizations can track and assess disasters as they happen. For example, during hurricanes, agencies use satellite data to understand the path of the storm. This way, they can evacuate or prepare communities before it hits.

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Artificial Intelligence

You have probably heard of artificial intelligence or AI, as it has been making headlines lately. But did you know that humanitarians can use it to help save lives? One way that AI helps is supporting data analysis and evidence-driven decision making.

AI is much faster and more efficient at analyzing large amounts of data. This helps to take off the time burden from the much-needed human resources in humanitarian organizations. Learn more about AI in humanitarian settings.

Social Media

Social media might get a little annoying, but it can be beneficial for humanitarian response. It is one of the easiest ways to encourage community participation and raise awareness. Organizations can send out alerts in case of an emergency via social media, instantly reaching millions. They can also conduct surveys and get first-hand input from communities. For instance, people across the world use Facebook to connect and support each other in a crisis.

Messaging Systems

A simpler technology that has been widely used by humanitarians for years is messaging. While many parts of the world still lack access to the internet, most do have access to simple cell-phones and coverage. As such, organizations can send SMS notifications and raise awareness about specific issues. They can also create conversation and get input from communities via this method.


Automation has been increasing for decades. Today, we see robots performing many tasks in various industries. They can be particularly useful for humanitarians due to the dangerous settings they sometimes work in. Instead of sending in humans for assessments, robots can do the job without risking more lives that are already at stake. Learn more about humanitarian robots.


Drones are a type of aerial robot, remotely operated. These are very useful in humanitarian settings. For example, they can take photos and videos of real-time situations. They are also able to provide deliveries of small goods, such as medicine, to otherwise hard-to-reach areas. Learn more about drones and humanitarian work.


As technological capacity grows, so does the ability for humanitarians to provide aid long-distance. This is useful to cut costs and provide more efficiency. Of course, we cannot always replace face-to-face interactions with long-distance aid delivery. But sometimes telecommuting can be very handy.

For example, specialist doctors can assist with telecommuting technologies without the cost or risk of deploying them in the field. Online meetings can also aid in leveraging resources, but reducing both financial and environmental costs.

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