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ReliefWeb is switching its log-in protocol

By Kevin Z.

At ReliefWeb, we are deeply grateful for the global visitors who use our website everyday to access lifesaving, current information about humanitarian emergencies.

We are updating our technology to Drupal 9 in light of Drupal 7's decommissioning later this year. As such, by the end of March we will also be changing our log-in system exclusively to Humanitarian ID (HID), an authentication service...


Talking Heads: ReliefWeb then and now

By Madeleine Wackernagel and Andy Footner

This month, ReliefWeb officially turns 25 - of course, the lead-up to the launch of a data-driven website in 1996 was way more complicated, but also much easier in many respects, than a similar venture in today’s tech world. But once the idea had percolated, and seed funding had been secured, it was achieved in a mere nine months.

The motivation behind ReliefWeb’s inception was the huge numbers of...

How we created a humanitarian data resource in just nine months

By Dennis King

On the 25th anniversary of ReliefWeb, I am proud that I was part of the design team back in 1996. Thinking back on those days, I am amazed by how much has changed in the past quarter-century. In 1996, something called electronic mail and the World Wide Web were just starting to be used in the work environment. Humanitarian information products, such as SitReps, appeals, maps, and assessments,...

ReliefWeb's Early Days

By Craig Duncan

ReliefWeb is now 25 years old. In a series of posts, we’ll be looking back over those years from the perspective of some of the people who helped make it what it is today. Craig Duncan, one of the first people to work on the project, remembers how it developed from a list of links – and how it found its name. Inevitably there are some technical details involved!

The ReliefWeb project had a few...


If your hiring organization is new to ReliefWeb

By Natalia Miller

Dear Job Poster,

Since your organization is new to us, we need to verify that its purpose and activities are in line with ReliefWeb’s mandate. Once the job form is submitted, kindly provide us with a copy of your annual report and any relevant information about your projects and donors at

It is important that you indicate your job ID and/or the link to your advertisement(s) in...


Humanitarian leadership stories

By Sofie Garde Thomle

In challenging times and despite rising needs, the humanitarian system continues to save and transform lives. Strong leadership by the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinators plays a crucial part in this.

Humanitarian leaders must act quickly and impartially while keeping a focus on the big picture, the external environment, the future and organizational change. In particular, the...


What’s new at ReliefWeb

By Madeleine Wackernagel

It’s been a while since we checked in with our users so I wanted to let you know what ReliefWeb has been up to in the past four months. We are pleased to report that user numbers are still rising. From the first quarter of last year to the same period in 2021, the number of users increased by almost 30 percent, to just over five million. In that same period, mobile use increased by almost 39...

Onwards and upwards - ReliefWeb turns 25 with record numbers

By Madeleine Wackernagel

After the “annus horribilis” that was 2020, everyone at ReliefWeb would like to wish all our users a brighter, healthier and happier 2021!

Last year was notably positive in one aspect, however: our user numbers topped a record-breaking 15 million! The 2019 figure of 10.8 million was in itself a record, so every COVID-19 cloud has a silver lining indeed.

On another positive note, this year marks our...

Bumper six months for ReliefWeb postings

By Madeleine Wackernagel

We don’t usually report back on ReliefWeb’s six-month performance indicators, but then again, these are not normal times. Thanks to the flood of information surrounding COVID-19 and the number of sources producing reports, analyses, infographics, manuals and guidelines, we have been inundated over the first six months of the year, with June proving to be the busiest time in terms of volume, even...

Why your feedback is so important

By Madeleine Wackernagel

When we launched the new responsive ReliefWeb site in February, it was after extensive research and user surveys, backed up by analytics data detailing our users’ preferences and priorities.

For us, the substantial increase in mobile use warranted a tailored response - hence we set out to make ReliefWeb as flexible and speedy for mobile users as possible, while not forgetting desktop and tablet...

ReliefWeb launches regional COVID-19 Topics pages

By Madeleine Wackernagel

On 7 May 2020, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs launched a revised COVID-19 Global Humanitarian Response Plan to include another nine vulnerable countries - Benin, Djibouti, Liberia, Mozambique, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sierra Leone, Togo and Zimbabwe - and calling for US$6.7 billion. So far it has raised almost $1 billion. The original GHRP, released on 25 March 2020,...

What’s new at ReliefWeb: COVID-19 Topic Page and latest improvements to usability

By ReliefWeb team

COVID-19 Topic Page

When the World Health Organization pronounced COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11 2020, there were more than 118,000 cases in 114 countries, and 4,291 people had lost their lives.

At time of writing, those numbers had topped 1,350,000 cases in 184 countries, with almost 75,000 deaths. The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), which manages ReliefWeb, launched...

Getting familiar with the new ReliefWeb responsive site

By Miguel Angel Hernandez Rivera

Since ReliefWeb launched its new responsive site, we have received feedback from many of our users, especially about usability and navigation. We truly value your input, which we can apply to continue improving the site to meet your needs.

While we review that feedback and continue working on better ways to present and deliver the critical humanitarian information to our global users, we would...


Revamped ReliefWeb focuses on accessibility and flexibility

By Andrew Footner

In 2010, when work started on ReliefWeb’s last major redesign, there weren't many visitors on mobile phones. Indeed, there were fewer than 60,000 users on mobile, just over 1%. Nine years later, more than five million visitors to the site used only mobile devices, almost half the total.

To serve the growing number of mobile visitors, was launched in 2013, a stripped-down,...


ReliefWeb in 2019 - the records keep on coming…

By Madeleine Wackernagel

In 2019, ReliefWeb continued to break its own records, topping the 10 million mark for the first time, with 10.8 million visitors. In a year characterized by extraordinary natural disasters – ranging from Cyclones Idai and Kenneth affecting millions of people in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe in the first quarter of the year, to Hurricane Dorian hitting the Bahamas in August, extremes of drought...

How ReliefWeb’s Topic Pages help to shed light on complex humanitarian issues

By Véronique Durroux-Malpartida

It is a commonplace that there is an abundance of information available about humanitarian situations; the key issue is not how much information we have at our disposal but how we present it in the most user-friendly manner, so that our audience can tap into it quickly and easily.

The selection filters and advanced search on ReliefWeb have improved over the years, allowing users to quickly narrow...


Humanitarian Transparency: Information-sharing during protracted emergencies

By Véronique Durroux-Malpartida

As an outcome of the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit, the Grand Bargain aims at improving the efficiency of humanitarian action. Among the commitments made were increasing the transparency in financing and support to local responders.

Publish What You Fund, the global campaign for aid and development transparency, was tasked with researching the information needs of humanitarian actors,...


ReliefWeb, a trove of resources for the academic community

By Véronique Durroux-Malpartida

While ReliefWeb was first created as an information-sharing platform to support well-informed decision-making in humanitarian crises, over the years the variety and comprehensiveness of its content have also made it a go-to resource for the academic community. Not only the humanitarians of tomorrow, but also many students and scholars in development and international relations are tapping into...


ReliefWeb subscriptions get a revamp

By Miguel Hernandez Rivera

Many of you (more than 150,000 subscribers at the last count!) receive various updates from Reliefweb, including OCHA situation reports, disaster updates, jobs, training and other country-specific information. To make your user experience much better, we have revamped our inbox updates to include the following features:

Same ‘look and feel’: you can easily identify ReliefWeb emails by their...


ReliefWeb fait un pas de plus vers le multilinguisme

By Andy Footner

Les récents visiteurs du site mobile de ReliefWeb auront remarqué un nouvel outil... Un sélecteur de langue est maintenant disponible dans le coin supérieur droit du site.

Cliquez dessus, et vous verrez trois options après l'anglais : espagnol, français et russe.

Il faut préciser que cet outil ne permet pas de traduire le contenu du site (la traduction de quelque 650 000 rapports de l'anglais vers...