Webinar: Online/Offline: How Technology Can Empower Local Refugee Communities

November 23, 2016

A conversation with Alan Vernon, Project Lead, Connectivity for Refugees, UNHCR, UN Refugee Agency and Joséphine Goube, Chief Executive Officer of Techfugees, to unpack UNHCR’s latest report, Connecting Refugees: How Internet and Mobile Connectivity Can Improve Refugee Well-Being and Transform Humanitarian Action, on the critical role that information and communications technology plays in improving the lives of refugees from city to city. From the lifeline of mobile connectivity to internet basics for e-registering health and other  services, ICT and online platforms are providing scalable tech solutions that facilitate refugee connection and inclusion and driving enduring social innovation offline.

Webinar Video

Webinar Resources


alan-vernonAlan Vernon, Project Lead, Connectivity for Refugees, UNHCR

Alan Vernon is currently the Project Lead for UNHCR’s new Connectivity for Refugees initiative. Prior to his current assignment, Mr. Vernon was the Deputy-Director of the Division of Information Systems and Telecommunications in UNHCR Headquarters, the UNHCR Representative in Malaysia, and the Director for Organizational Development and Management in UNHCR Headquarters. Mr. Vernon previously served as UNHCR Representative in Sri Lanka as well as field assignments in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Thailand.


josephine-goube-smJoséphine Goube, Chief Executive Officer, Techfugees

Listed as one of the 30 under 30 Social Entrepreneur of 2016 by Forbes, Joséphine is an hacktivist for migrants and refugees in Europe. As COO at Techfugees, a non-profit coordinating the tech community’s answer to the refugee needs, she helps structure the organisation structure in 25 countries and focus its activities on tech that makes the most impact for refugees and NGOs. As tech evangelist for a web-based recruitment platform, Yborder, she supports the mobility of software engineers within the borders of Europe.


UNHCR aims, through creative partnerships and smart investments, to ensure that all refugees, and the communities that host them, have access to available, affordable and usable mobile and internet connectivity in order to leverage these technologies for protection, communications, education, health, self-reliance, community empowerment and duration solution.

 Techfugees is a London-based social enterprise coordinating the international tech community’s response to the needs of Refugees. Techfugees organises conferences, workshops, hackathons and meetups in around the world in an effort to generate tech solutions that can help refugees. It also curates and promotes the best projects it finds for implementation in the field.


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