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Data management technology for humanitarian and conflict zones: The Dharma platform.

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr Adam Coutts.

Jesse Berns will speak about the development and release of this new data management technology and how it can be used in a variety of contexts – from the conflict zones of Syria, refugee settings in Lebanon, political organising and campaigning to clinical trials and hospital reporting.

The seminar will be of interest for anyone involved in field data management and analysis in developed and developing world contexts.

Drinks reception after the seminar.


Dharma is an all-in-one platform that lets anyone turn information into action by allowing users to easily gather, understand, and share crucial field-level data. It’s an out-of-the-box solution that requires no setup. It’s designed for non-technical users, but it’s robust enough for deep analysis. It’s customizable, flexible, and works anywhere, online or off. What that means is that with Dharma, you can stop focusing on gathering information and start putting it to work.

Created by Jesse Berns and colleagues it was built to work in the most difficult places on Earth. Designed for use in refugee camps and humanitarian crises, the platform was developed in response to the difficulties with existing data tools which were time-consuming, and did not provide the functions needed to understand and use the information that was collected. The technology has been piloted, tested, and refined for years in conflict zones and disasters, and over and over again, we’ve seen that anyone – no matter their background – can use it to turn information into impact.

Jesse Berns

Jesse is a field epidemiologist and clinician with over a decade of service in the realm of complex humanitarian emergencies. Most recently, she served as an emergency epidemiologist for Medicins Sans Frontieres. In this role, she has worked throughout the middle east, sub-saharan Africa, and latin america in response to conflict, disaster, and infectious disease outbreaks. Most recently, Jesse has worked on the front lines of the Syrian crisis in Iraq & Lebanon as the principal investigator for several large emergency health assessments. Jesse also functioned as the technical lead for the MSF Switzerland Health Information System (HIS) project; where she designed simple, field-driven data collection tools & methods for use in 22 countries and over 50 emergency projects.

Prior to her role as an epidemiologist at MSF , Jesse worked as an Epidemiologist for the World Health Organization Iraq Country Office (EMRO). During her time as a graduate student at UC Berkeley, Jesse was a graduate researcher at the US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) Emergency Response Branch (ERB). Prior to her public health career, Jesse served as a critical care Paramedic for 6 years for the City of San Diego

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