The Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX) is an open repository where data can be uploaded and shared between organizations. It was designed to provide support in decision making in the context of humanitarian crises.
Distributors / Implementing Organizations
HDX was designed and implemented by OCHA. In 2020, it had contributions from 279 organizations.
Intellectural Property Type
User Provision Model
HDX can be visited
Distributions to Date Status
In August 2020, HDX repository consisted of 17,639 datasets, from 253 locations and 1364 sources.
HDX intends to aggregate information that is useful in humanitarian contexts, humanitarian data. HDX defines humanitarian data as follows:
- data about the context in which a humanitarian crisis is occurring
- data about the people affected by the crisis and their needs
- data about the response by organisations and people seeking to help those who need assistance
Contact for support can be found here.
Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters
To make humanitarian data accessible and easy to use for analysis.
Vetted Performance Status
The UN has claimed that HDX has been a key enabler for aid agencies to be able to compare and contrast various needs crisis contexts and help enhance the responses. In 2015, The New York Times used HDX data to report on the Ebola outbreak, showcasing the efforts to address the outbreak to the global audience.
Complementary Technical Systems
Humanitarian Exchange Language (HXL), is a language standard intended to make data interoperable between data sources and organizations. It is used in HDX.
Academic Research and References
Keßler, C., Hendrix, C., 2015, The Humanitarian eXchange Language: Coordinating Disaster Response with Semantic Web Technologies, The Semantic Web for all, 1 Jan. 2015 : 5 – 21.
- UN Radio - Saving lives with data: how the UN is developing digital tools for improved humanitarian aid
- Capacity4Dev.eu - Q&A: The challenge of open data in humanitarian response
- AcademyHealth - Sixth Annual Health Data Liberator Award Honors Work to Increase Use and Impact of Humanitarian Data
- Devex - Opinion: Humanitarian world is full of data myths. Here are the most popular
- Center for Data Innovation - 5 Q’s for Sarah Telford, Chief of Data Services at UNOCHA
- Aidpreneur - Terms of Reference Podcast, with guest Sarah Telford
- Devex - Solving the data conundrum: How to leverage tech and 'big data' for impact
- Thomson Reuters Foundation - From displacement to death, UN data innovation aims to boost aid response
- Huffington Post - Open data platform lets aid groups respond more efficiently to crises
- UN News - UN Agencies boost partnership on visualization of food security data for Yemen
- The Guardian - Data exchange helps humanitarians act fast and effectively
- Fast Company - How the candy crush of data is saving lives in Nepal
- Forbes - UN deploys new tech to make relief faster in Nepal
- The Independent - Open Data: What is it and why are people so scared of it?