Piloting Humanitarian Biometrics in Yemen

Policy brief

Clausen, Maria Louise (2021) Piloting Humanitarian Biometrics in Yemen, MidEast Policy Brief, 1. Oslo: PRIO.

The World Food Programme’s (WFP) use of biometrics in Yemen is a prime example of challenges related to the use of biometric solutions in humanitarianism. The humanitarian crisis in Yemen is the worst in the world and it is deteriorating. More than 24 million people – 80 percent of the population – require some form of assistance, and of those more than 16 million are in acute need. For one of the major players in the humanitarian field, the WFP, the current emergency response in Yemen is its largest operation. Simultaneously, the WFP is a frontrunner in placing data and digital technologies at the centre of humanitarian operations. This brief explores the tension between the expanding use of biometrics to increase aid transparency and the respect for privacy.

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