Deloitte teams with humanitarian groups to prepare for crises

Press release

International Organization for Migration, AtrocityWatch selected for new Humanitarian Innovation Program

New York, 16 December 2013 – Deloitte is to help two humanitarian organizations design technology solutions to tackle some of the world’s most pressing issues including natural disasters, famine, human rights violations, and conflicts. AtrocityWatch and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) were selected for the new global Deloitte Humanitarian Innovation Program. These technology-based solutions will improve how the organizations communicate, coordinate, and deliver on the ground help during crises.  

Details of the project were made public recently at a United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA) event at the UN in New York.

“Deloitte believes that when the private and public sectors combine their skills and work together – in new and innovative ways – we can better tackle the big issues facing society today. It’s a responsibility and a privilege to bring what we do best to the vital work of these organizations,” said Barry Salzberg, Global CEO, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited. “Adding our innovative thinking to the skills of startups, such as AtrocityWatch, and established organizations, like IOM, allows us to leverage each other’s expertise to create solutions that better enable the sector to prepare and respond to crises.”

Deloitte member firm professionals will team with AtrocityWatch, a technology startup that monitors global atrocities, to help develop a big data application that leverages social media and person-centered data around the world to provide early warning of potential mass atrocities. Deloitte member firm professionals will provide data analytics and cyber security expertise to help shape the creation of a mobile application to link people under threat with decision-makers who are in a position to respond.

“AtrocityWatch’s mission is to couple vanguard technologies and analytical techniques with humanitarian expertise to prevent atrocities around the world,” said Geoff Green, Founder, AtrocityWatch. “Collaborating with the Deloitte Humanitarian Innovation Program will enable AtrocityWatch to deliver on our mission for decades to come.”

Deloitte UK’s Switzerland office will team with IOM, a leading intergovernmental organization that facilitates the orderly and humane management of displaced populations, to help with a systems model to manage refugee migration and allow the different organizations involved to stay better informed, coordinated, and connected to each other during crises. The model will use technology to enhance the information sharing between sector-specific responders such as those responsible for food distribution, infrastructure rehabilitation, shelter and health. These organizations work together in camps to coordinate the delivery of life-saving support.

“Accurate and timely information sharing is vital. Our goal through this collaboration is to design an operating model that will enhance the real-time processing of information between humanitarian cluster coordinators offsite with those on the ground managing the day-to-day needs of the humanitarian camps,” said Mohammed Abdiker, Director of the Department of Operations and Emergencies, IOM. “This is especially relevant in the context of the current Philippines disaster response, where cross-sectoral concerns are closely linked with mobility. The new model, will further improve exchange of information, and help provide the population with multi-sectoral assistance.”

Deloitte member firms will be executing this Program with joint humanitarian-Deloitte project teams over the next three to six months, with the projects formally commencing in early 2014.

The Deloitte Humanitarian Innovation Program was developed after broad consultations with leading humanitarian organizations that identified the need for innovation and collaboration with the private sector. The Program has already successfully delivered projects with UN OCHA and Save the Children International (SCI).

“When disasters strike, Save the Children International must be ready to rapidly transform its operations from every-day activities to a large-scale emergency response. The more efficiently we can do this, the more people in crisis our organization can potentially reach with life-saving food, shelter, and supplies,” said David Wightwick, Deputy Humanitarian Director, Operations. “We asked Deloitte to assess how effectively we scale up and scale down our local operations during international humanitarian crises, knowing that they would draw on their broad experience of tackling similar challenges within the private and public sectors. The resulting findings have provided us with a deep analysis of the way we operate, and a framework for how we can strengthen our model in the future.”

Deloitte’s intention is to share the outcomes of projects conducted under the Humanitarian Innovation Program so that the wider humanitarian sector can benefit from, and scale the solutions.

To learn more about the positive impact already being delivered by the Deloitte network with the humanitarian sector visit or watch the video on the UN OCHA leadership development project below or on YouTube.

Media Contact:
Carolyn Vadino
Public Relations
+1 212 436 6970
+1 917 574 5367

* Notes to editors:

  • Deloitte understands the fundamental and positive role business plays in shaping and creating the society of the future, and this year committed record amounts of skills and expertise to tackling challenging social issues through initiatives such as the Deloitte Humanitarian Innovation Program.
  • Deloitte invested nearly US $180 million in communities in FY13 through a combination of skills-based volunteering, pro bono work and donations, including 870,000 pro bono and volunteer hours.

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Deloitte provides audit, tax, consulting, and financial advisory services to public and private clients spanning multiple industries. With a globally connected network of member firms in more than 150 countries, Deloitte brings world-class capabilities and high-quality service to clients, delivering the insights they need to address their most complex business challenges. Deloitte has in the region of 200,000 professionals, all committed to becoming the standard of excellence.

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