Title

The role of information and communication in the context of humanitarian service: Introduction to special issue on communication in humanitarian environments

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication

Volume

52

Issue

4

Publication Date

1-1-2009

First Page

325

Last Page

328

Abstract

Information and communication are playing an increasingly important and more sophisticated role in humanitarian-service activities involving logistics, organizational learning, health-care delivery systems, assessment, and education. This role is impacted by important trends and environments within which the humanitarian sector operates. These include a shift of focus from providing direct aid to capacity building, empowerment, and assessment; a shift in project focus from technical solutions to broader sociotechnical strategies; and increased emphasis on demonstrating effectiveness, improving efficiency, and collaborating with other organizations. Five articles in this issue address these areas, including two pieces on developing information and communication tools to support the work of humanitarian organizations, two pieces on preparing students to work in the humanitarian environment, and one on organizational culture and the challenge of enhancing organizational learning in the humanitarian sector.

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