Mapping Exercise on Quality & Accountability initiatives

Three of the largest quality and accountability initiatives in humanitarian assistance (HAP International,
People In Aid and the Sphere Project) are actively collaborating to review existing humanitarian standards and determine how they can be improved. The aim is to help aid workers and agencies to improve the quality and effectiveness of humanitarian action for the people we assist.

This collaborative process is called the Joint Standards Initiative. The Stakeholder Consultation is a key element of the process, which will generate robust evidence from a wide range of actors across the humanitarian sector, which in turn will shape how the process develops and inform the decisions made by the Boards of the three initiatives on the future of their standards.

JSI commissioned the mapping exercise in November 2012, to better understand the breadth and diversity of current quality and accountability initiatives. This is a contribution to the wider JSI dialogue about standards coherence and helps position the 3 initiatives within the wider quality and accountability sector.
Liza Cragg was selected by the JSI Advisory Group to undertake this piece of work, on the strength of extensive experience across the sector, a strong understanding of current quality and accountability initiatives and her independent voice. Liza’s views do not represent the official views of JSI, HAP International, Sphere Project or People In Aid.

Liza elaborates a number of limitations to the mapping at the beginning of the report, particularly in relation to the short time frame to undertake her research, which meant that it was not possible to ensure an exhaustive mapping of all relevant initiatives. In addition, complex initiatives were categorised using a relatively simple typology. It is recognized that there are some omissions in the data tables, however this does not imply that the information does not exist or is not available from the organisations responsible for initiatives.
Bearing this in mind, the mapping is best considered an indicator of the breadth of Q&A initiatives, rather than as a comprehensive and statistically accurate analysis.

JSI is making available on the website a number of other ‘scene setting’ pieces to support the JSI Stakeholder Consultation, including a timeline of Quality & Accountability initiatives drafted by John Borton, a ‘thinkpiece’ developed by John Cosgrave, as well as introductory materials, to assist the humanitarian and development community to understand why standards coherence is being considered.