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CRVS and forced displacement: current challenges and possible solutions


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Presentation by Nicholas Oakeshott (UNHCR) at the international conference on innovations in Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS) systems - Ottawa on 27-28 February 2018. See more at

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CRVS and forced displacement: current challenges and possible solutions

  1. 1. CRVS and forced displacement: current challenges and possible solutions Nicholas Oakeshott Senior Identity Management Officer
  2. 2. Heightened risks for the forcibly displaced • Civil registration and identity documents lost, destroyed or left behind. • Unable to prove their legal identity • Creating obstacles to the efficient provision of assistance. • Additional barriers to protection and solutions. Source: ADB
  3. 3. Traditional Approaches • UNHCR’s leads the emergency refugee registration, in support of States. • Birth registration of refugee children promoted/supported by UNHCR. • Encampment and parallel service provision, including healthcare and HIS. Source: ADB
  4. 4. The changing landscape: Inclusion • 2016 New York Declaration on Refugees and Migrants and the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework. • 2030 Agenda, SDG 16.9 and “leaving no one behind”. • Regional CRVS Ministerial Declarations in Africa and Asia and the Pacific.
  5. 5. Solution 1: UNHCR’s Strategy for Digital Identity and Inclusion “We want every refugee to have a unique digital identity. This will enhance accountability and facilitate two-way communication between refugees and service providers. It will also help prevent and reduce statelessness.” UN High Commissioner for Refugees, 2 October 2017
  6. 6. The new Integrated Refugee Health Information System (iRHIS) “One streamlined solution from data collection to data consumption” • Scalable, flexible, configurable and interoperable. 7 Field User Data generation User Data consumer Back up
  7. 7. Solution 2: UNHCR/WBG’s Joint Data Centre on Forced Displacement To enable a better informed and more sustainable response to forced displacement, underpinning a coordinated humanitarian- development approach.
  8. 8. Solution 3: Digitization of CRVS systems • Enabling systemic CRVS coverage to hard-to-reach areas, where refugees often reside. • Review/updating of legal frameworks in response to digitization, guaranteeing universality; inclusion; data protection and privacy.
  9. 9. Conclusions • The changing policy landscape places a greater emphasis on the inclusion of refugees in State systems, including CRVS systems. • Digitization and new initiatives provide opportunities to address key gaps and engrained challenges to the inclusion of refugees in CRVS systems and improve access to data and strengthened analysis.