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Biometric Data Collection in Humanitarian Action: Through the lens of responsible data management

20 November 2019


With the growing use of bio-metric data collection in humanitarian action and the challenges faced in keeping policy and practice up to speed with changing technologies, the rapid expansion of its use continues to pose questions. Is the humanitarian sector “ready” for mass bio-metric collection? What do we do with all this data and where does it go when programmes end? In a fragile context how can we ensure consent is freely given and alternatives are considered? How can interests of governments and other authorities over biometric data collection and use be managed in respect of humanitarian principles? The CALP Network hosted a webinar with humanitarian practitioners and private sector actors to discuss its use in humanitarian contexts in the MENA region. The discussion zoomed in on the difficult dilemmas that organisations face before, during and after deployment and what this means when we talk about responsible data management.