Nitpicking: The Logistics of Humanitarian Dronefare

Drones, as popular narrative would have it, are a cure-all for the logistically complicated humanitarian conundrums that have eclipsed us.

Violent atrocity beyond the realm of journalist access? Bear witness via aerial surveillance. Vaccine delivery in mountainous village with no cold chain? Propel freeze-packed parcels over the peaks. Difficulty obtaining specific parts for medical device repair in a remote region of the world? Drop off a 3D printer and let the Internet of Things spring forth from the empty vale.

To preface, I am optimistic about the potential drone use holds for all of the above purposes. But I am skeptical of whether entrepreneurs and hobbyists presently operating in this space are capable of achieving these goals, and whether interested funders are creating a space governed by rules and incentives that will guide the actors towards success – and, indeed, how success might be defined. That said, I’d like to present some challenges that as far I know have not yet been confronted in hopes of prompting a more nuanced conversation about the realities of humanitarian drone use. Continue reading “Nitpicking: The Logistics of Humanitarian Dronefare”

Nitpicking: The Logistics of Humanitarian Dronefare