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January 29, 2010 |  Print  Your Opinion  

Interview with Claudia Gonzalez

UNHCR: Tweets from the Edge

Interview with Claudia Gonzalez: Social media is transforming how the UN relates humanitarian crises to the global public. In this interview, the former head of Public Relations and Special Projects in the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees explains how Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and other platforms have added a new dimension to their humanitarian work.

UNHCR is helping refugees give voice to their stories, allowing people around the world to engage in a conversation about how to improve the lives of those most affected by wars and conflict. In a few short years, UNHCR has become the leading United Nations organization using social media with, for example, over 1 million followers on Twitter.

Social media allows people to connect on a very basic, human level with those suffering through humanitarian crises. Twitter, YouTube, Google Earth, and other mobile technologies are allowing the world at large an intimate understanding of life in a refugee camp.

"For many, numbers don't really matter, but for refugees they do. The more people follow and understand what is happening, the more people are going to be conscious about... these kinds of problems," says Ms. Gonzalez in this video interview for Atlantic Community:


Claudia Gonzalez is the Head of Marketing at The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. Prior to joining the Global Fund, Ms. Gonzalez was the Head of Public Relations and Special Projects at the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

This interview was recorded by Joerg Wolf, Editor-in-Chief of, at the DLD Conference in Munich on January 25, 2010.

At the DLD Conference, Ms. Gonzalez was presenting on how she helped UNHCR to 'Re-Brand' and use Social Media.


View some examples of the UNHCR Nokia project here:

Related Material from Atlantic Community:

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