Partnerships and Security Risk Management: A joint action guide for local and international aid organisations

Manual and Guideline
Originally published


Since attacks on aid workers have been recorded, local and national NGO (L/NNGO) aid workers worldwide have been the most exposed to security risks. As efforts to ‘localise’ aid carry on and with it, partnerships multiply, we must ensure that international NGOs (INGO) and L/NNGOs address these risks within their partnerships.

This guide aims to support L/NNGOs and INGOs in the aid sector to better manage and share responsibility for security risks in partnerships. It builds on findings from the GISF briefing paper, Security Management and Capacity Development: International agencies working with local partners, (2012) and the GISF research paper, Partnerships and Security Risk Management: from the local partner’s perspective (2020). Addressing key challenges identified in this research, this guide offers tools and guidance on improving partnerships’ structure and supporting better access to security risk management (SRM) resources for local NGOs in the humanitarian space, including advocacy.

The guide’s objectives are:

  • To promote an equitable, transparent and mutually beneficial approach to SRM within partnerships.
  • To provide guidance on how to approach SRM within partnership arrangements in order to improve collaboration, communication, and shared risk ownership.
  • To provide resources to empower L/NNGOs to build their own SRM capacity and manage the security risk management aspects of partnerships with other L/NNGOs and INGOs.

This guide was developed for L/NNGOs in the process of entering into a partnership or already existing partners. It is targeted at staff with responsibilities relating to operations, security or partnerships within INGOs and L/NNGOs. Nonetheless, the guide remains relevant for non-security experts, as security risk management cannot operate effectively in a silo.

You can download the complete guide on the left. A summary brief of the guide will soon be available.

The associated tools can be downloaded in an editable format using the links below. Organisations are free to use or adapt these tools, provided that GISF is acknowledged as the original source.