Refugees and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR): Information Access and Information Services

OBODORUKU, Benedicta (2018) Refugees and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR): Information Access and Information Services. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2018 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Transform Libraries, Transform Societies in Session S01 - Africa. In: Libraries as Centers of Community Engagements for Development, 22-23 August 2018, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Bookmark or cite this item: http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/2409
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Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.

Abstract

Refugees and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR): Information Access and Information Services

Since 1951, when the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was founded, the pervasive surges in the numbers of refugees have been of fundamental concern to the United Nations (UN) and the UNHCR worldwide. This exploratory study presented a laconic history of the world’s refugees, the history of UNHCR, the history of refugees (mainly from Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo [DRC], Rwanda, and Somalia), as well as the history of Tanzania, the hosting country of these refugees. This research examined information access to refugees in Tanzania and the UNHCR’s information services. This research study also investigated how UNHCR fit into the information age of technology and recordkeeping by reviewing the following questions: (1) What are the roles of technology in UNHCR? What are the services offered by UNHCR? What is the information access provided by UNHCR? How does UNHCR share information? What are the information services provided by UNHCR? How does UNHCR provide access and share information? (2). What are the processes employed by UNHCR to reshape their organization such as the organizational theory, innovational theory, and change theory, if any? How has the UNHCR changed, and, if so, what brought about the change? (3) How does technology stimulate change in the UNHCR, if any? Are there changes to UNHCR since it was created in 1951? (4) How does UNHCR think about technology or do they think in a different way about technology? Is technology relevant to UNHCR’s works? By employing content analysis, this study presented numerous findings based on various studies and literature examined and analyzed to demonstrate information access on food for refugees in Tanzania, information on security and protection for refugees in Tanzania and how it could influence the international community to make available information for refugees in Tanzania and to provide adequate food, security and protection. The findings also suggested that, at an organizational level, UNHCR worked to advance the performance through reform and restructuring by streamlining UN Headquarters in offering general direction and maximum assistance to workers in the field, and by merging functions via relocating support services to the field. UNHCR also provided access to information to their staff.

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