New technologies and new policies: the ICRC’s evolving approach to working with separated families

International Review of the Red Cross, Volume 94 Number 888, Winter 2012
Olivier Dubois, Katharine Marshall, Siobhan Sparkes McNamara
Publication Year
Thematic Area
Technology & Data / The Search Process / Forensics / Families
Psychosocial Support / Protecting/Restoring Family Links / Information Management (Archive/Database/Register) / Identification / Family Needs / DNA Analysis / Central Tracing Agency (CTA)
Open access

The field of humanitarian action is far from static, and the ICRC has worked over the years to evolve and respond to changing needs and changing circumstances. The past several decades have seen a proliferation of humanitarian actors, protracted, complex conflicts, and the rapid rise of new technologies that have significantly impacted how humanitarian work is done. The ICRC has been continually challenged to adapt in this changing environment, and its core work of supporting separated families – through restoration of family links and through support to the families of the missing – provides insight into ways that it has met this challenge and areas in which it may still seek to improve.