Local Data Stories Project; IFRC

Crisis context/scope of work Accountability for crisis affected population
Geographical scopeGlobal
Project periodMay – June 2021
Donors/partnersInternational Federation of Red Cross (IFRC)
BudgetUSD 18,000
ProblemDFS’ solution
The International Federation of the Red Cross Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world’s largest humanitarian network with over 160,000 branches and millions of volunteers. 
To highlight stories from national communities, IFRC initiated the Local Data Stories Project in 2019, allowing local communities to inform programming. The project extracts information from social media, local news articles, and strategic documents from a Federation-wide database. 
After prototyping the project in selected countries, IFRC needed a technical partner to conduct a technical review of existing functions and systems before the global rollout.
DFS evaluated the potential of expanding the Local Data Stories Project to include all 192 National Societies by conducting a desktop review with members, evaluating the site’s code/algorithm settings, and ensuring stakeholder feedback reviews from all relevant parties. 
DFS provided IFRC with strategic advice to support the next stage of its beta project including recommendation on how open source code could be integrated with other internal and external tools for IFRC. DFS suggested a series of higher-level organizational recommendations on how to best integrate and use data across IFRC while helping to facilitate the global roll-out of the project. 

After piloting a small-scale study to explore the potential for machine learning and Al to help us gather more information on the activities of local branches around the world, we needed a technical partner. That’s when we heard about DFS. We really enjoyed working with them. They confirmed our assumptions about potential data gaps on the digital transformation journey and provided a code review, in-depth research, and recommendations that were used to inform our next steps.

Heather Leson
Data Literacy Lead, International Federation of Red Cross Red Crescent Societies