Biometric data flows and unintended consequences of counterterrorism

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Examining unintended consequences of the makings and processing of biometric data in counterterrorism and humanitarian contexts, this article introduces a two-fold framework through which it analyzes biometric data-makings and flows in Afghanistan and Somalia. It combines Tilley's notion of living laboratory and Larkin's notion of infrastructure into a framework that attends to the conditions under which biometric data is made and to subsequent flows of such data through data-sharing agreements or unplanned access. Exploring such unintended consequences, attention needs to be paid to the variety of actors using biometrics for different purposes yet with data flows across such differences. Accordingly, the article introduces the notion of digital intervention infrastructures, with biometric databases as one dimension.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Review of the Red Cross
Issue number916-917
Pages (from-to)619-652
Number of pages34
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © The Author(s), 2022. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the ICRC.

    Research areas

  • biometric data, counterterrorism, data-sharing, humanitarian actors, infrastructure, living laboratories, unintended consequences

ID: 346529463