Al Osool: Understanding information behavior for community development at Za'atari Syrian refugee camp

Karen E. Fisher, Eiad Yafi, Ying Xu, Carleen Maitland

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


Za'atari Syrian Refugee Camp in Jordan is home to about 83,000 people fleeing the violence in Syria. Building on a multi-year engagement at Za'atari, we developed an information-enabled community engagement approach to identify and address challenges at the camp, engage community members in problem solving and increase self- reliance. Using HCI mixed methods, we facilitated the creation of a community-commissioned database of household assets, being implemented by the UNHCR with potential for adoption in other refugee camps. Our main contributions are participatory approaches to understanding information behaviors within a fragmented social fabric in high-constraint, low-affordance settings resulting from armed conflict. This work generates insights valuable for researchers and designers working with refugees.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationC and T 2019 - 9th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, Conference Proceedings
EditorsFlorian Cech, Hilda Tellioglu
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781450371629
StatePublished - Jun 3 2019
Event9th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, C and T 2019 - Vienna, Austria
Duration: Jun 3 2019Jun 7 2019

Publication series

NameACM International Conference Proceeding Series


Conference9th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, C and T 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Networks and Communications

Cite this