“My mission is to pioneer
Next Generation Humanitarian Technologies”
Patrick Meier is an internationally recognized thought leader on humanitarian technology and innovation. His new book, “Digital Humanitarians” has been endorsed by Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Oxford, UN, Red Cross, World Bank, USAID and others. Over the past 12 years, Patrick has worked in the Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Somalia, Liberia, India, Nepal, Timor-Leste, Kyrgyzstan, Turkey, Morocco, Western Sahara, Haiti, Vanuatu and Northern Ireland on a wide range of humanitarian projects with several international organizations including the United Nations and the World Bank. In 2010, he was publicly recognized by Clinton for his pioneering digital humanitarian efforts, which he continues to this day. Patrick’s work has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, CNN, BBC News, UK Guardian, The Economist, Forbes & Times Magazines, New Yorker, NPR, Wired, Mashable, TechCrunch, Fast Company, Nature, New Scientist, Scientific American and elsewhere. His influential and widely-read blog iRevolutions has received over 1.7 million hits. He tweets at @patrickmeier.
Patrick is currently Director of Social Innovation at QCRI where he works with experts in advanced computing to develop Next Generation Humanitarian Technologies. During major disasters, he deploys these innovative solutions at the request of international humanitarian organizations. Patrick serves on the Innovation Team of the UN Secretary-General’s World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) and co-founded the Digital Humanitarian Network (DHN) with the UN, which has been described as one of the most innovative humanitarian initiatives in the past 10 years. Patrick also co-founded the International CrisisMappers Network and the award-winning Standby Task Force (SBTF), both early and notable pioneers of digital humanitarian action. In addition, Patrick is an internationally sought-out speaker, having given over 200 talks in more than 20 countries across 6 continents. He has spoken at the White House, UN, Google, Twitter, Harvard, Stanford, MIT, Skoll World Forum, Club de Madrid, Mobile World Congress, PopTech, TTI/Vanguard, SXSW and several TEDx’s.
In 2013, the UN formally requested that he join their humanitarian information management team in the Philippines to support response efforts in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan. The Category 5 Typhoon devastated the country and resulted in an unprecedented use of UAVs or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (small drones). Shortly after leaving the Philippines, Patrick founded the Humanitarian UAV Network (UAViators) which actively promotes the safe, coordinated and effective use of UAVs in humanitarian settings. In 2015, he spearheaded the World Bank’s UAV mission in response to Cyclone Pam, a Category 5 Cyclone in the Pacific. He was subsequently invited by the UN to coordinate UAV teams responding to the Nepal Earthquakes. He spearheaded a joint disaster recovery UAV Mission near Kathmandu to support rebuilding & preparedness efforts. Patrick organized and co-taught the first ever professional UAV training for established humanitarian organizations and co-organized the first Humanitarian UAV Experts Meeting held at the UN Secretariat. He also ran the first International Policy Forum on Humanitarian UAVs, which was hosted by the Rockefeller Foundation. The Forum developed guidelines to inform the safe, coordinated and effective use of UAVs in humanitarian settings. Patrick also authored the report “Humanitarian UAV Missions: Towards Best Practices” and wrote the chapter on Humanitarian UAVs in “Drones and Aerial Observation,” an important Primer published by the New America Foundation.
Prior to QCRI, Patrick co-founded and co-directed the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative’s (HHI) Program on Crisis Mapping & Early Warning at Harvard University and served as Director of Crisis Mapping at Ushahidi, one of the Top 50 most innovative and disruptive companies in the world, according to MIT. Patrick often serves on judging panels for international competitions, which have included GSMA’s Global Mobile Awards and UAE’s Drones for Good Award. He is a UNICEF Humanitarian Innovations Fellow, Rockefeller Foundation Fellow, PopTech Fellow and a National Geographic Emerging Explorer. Patrick is also a distinguished scholar with a PhD from The Fletcher School, a Pre-Doctoral Fellowship from Stanford University, an MA from Columbia University and EAP from UC Berkeley. In addition, Patrick was a Research Fellow at the Peace Research Institute, Oslo (PRIO) and holds certificates in Complexity Science from both the Santa Fe Institute (SFI) and the New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI). He has given numerous guest lectures and has taught several professional, graduate and undergraduate courses.
CV available here (PDF).
Patrick’s photography: A President Emerita of New York’s prestigious Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) once described Patrick’s aerial photography of Italy as “fascinating,” “wonderful,” and “like a montage by many a contemporary artist.” All images here are copyrighted by Patrick Meier. They may be used freely for non-commercial purposes only and only if they are clearly credited to Patrick Meier and linked to iRevolutions.org.