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01 Oct 2015 description

There are nearly 60 million refugees and displaced people in the world. Most have been displaced for years.

But myths and misconceptions remain about the length of displacement, where people are displaced from and how best to help them survive.

Here are 10 things to know about refugees and displacement. These graphics are based on findings from ‘Protracted displacement: uncertain paths to self-reliance in exile’, available at www.odi.org/hpg/protracted-displacement.

01 Oct 2015 description

Drawing an exact picture of the global state of protracted displacement is an approximate and incomplete exercise. Each situation of protracted displacement is its own unique and complex system and the data available does not allow for the dimensions and characteristics to be understood.

24 Sep 2015 description

Ilmi Granoff, Jason Eis, Will McFarland and Chris Hoy, Charlene Watson, Gaia de Battista, Cor Marijs, Amina Khan and Natasha Grist

Eradicating extreme poverty is achievable by 2030, through growth and reductions in inequality. However, unless global emissions peak by around 2030 and fall to near zero by 2100, catastrophic climate change could draw up to 720 million people back into extreme poverty.

17 Mar 2015 description

Syrian community provides aid where UN struggles to reach - new report

As the Syria conflict enters its fifth year, the growth of 600-700 diaspora and local aid groups has ‘filled the gap’ left by the limited presence of struggling international aid agencies, providing both assistance and protection to Syrians says a new report launched today by UK-based think tank the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

12 Mar 2015 description

In humanitarian settings, aid agencies often assist populations by transferring resources, usually using cash, vouchers or in-kind aid, such as food rations, shelter materials, seeds and tools and kits of household items. The use of cash or vouchers to replace in-kind aid is most pronounced in food assistance programming, but it is increasingly being considered for emergency shelter, education and many other kinds of programming.

05 Mar 2015 description

For years, British humanitarian NGOs have criticised counter-terrorism laws for undermining their aid operations, and British Muslim NGOs have argued that they have been disproportionately affected by such laws. Banks have placed restrictions on the services they offer to various UK NGOs working in conflicts like Syria and Gaza while other NGOs have been hard hit by allegations of links to terrorism. All of this has affected the work of humanitarian organisations seeking to provide aid in high-risk conflict zones.

23 Dec 2014 description

DUBAI/LONDON, 23 December 2014 (IRIN) - Despite the popular perception that large parts of Iraq are cut off from international aid, new research by IRIN and the Overseas Development Institute’s Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG) shows humanitarian assistance is in fact reaching people in areas of the country controlled by militants from the group calling itself Islamic State (IS).

The IRIN/HPG Crisis Brief is a new product designed for aid workers, policy makers and donors to address a gap in current analysis of humanitarian research and action.

05 Sep 2014 description

Introduction

Eleanor Davey and Eva Svoboda

03 Sep 2014 description

Humanitarianism is deeply engrained in China’s history. Starting with hydraulic systems for flood control in ancient China through to civil aid societies, Buddhist monasteries and Western missionaries in later centuries, an array of influences have shaped the country’s culture of care and its distinctive ‘humanitarian’ identity.

31 Jul 2014 description

What armed groups like Al-Shabaab and the Taliban think of aid agencies can mean the difference between gaining access to areas under their control to provide aid people in need – or being expelled from their territory.

Based on research and interviews with members of the Taliban and Al-Shabaab, this HPG policy brief explores how these armed groups perceive aid agencies and the implications on humanitarian response in those areas.

Key messages:

21 Jul 2014 description

The private sector has long been a major contributor to humanitarian action. At the community level, businesses frequently use their materials and resources to aid people affected by crises. As local markets recover and supply chains are repaired, crisis-affected people are once again able to access basic goods and, in some cases, resume livelihoods.

30 Apr 2014 description

Increased engagement by the military in humanitarian crises, often led by the push for stabilisation, has been controversial, particularly for humanitarians. Fearing that their aid activities could be made to serve political and military goals – not humanitarian goals – many agencies have been cautious about embarking on civil-military coordination.

25 Apr 2014 description

In the last three years, the conflict in Syria has claimed over 120,000 lives, and nearly 10 million people inside Syria are in need of humanitarian aid.

Civilians have been deliberately targeted by armed groups but not enough has been done to provide protection for them, despite wider policy and legal developments on the concept of protection of civilians. The international humanitarian response has been largely dedicated to securing access and delivering material aid – vital aspects of humanitarian assistance – but with limited focus on protection of civilians.

24 Apr 2014 description

Insurgents and other armed groups are often seen as inherently predatory and hostile to aid workers, attacking staff, extorting money and looting goods and equipment, denying access and expelling aid organisations from areas under their control. Yet in-depth analysis of armed groups has been largely neglected in the literature on humanitarian principles and aid worker security, and aid agencies often lack the information they need to successfully engage with these actors to gain access to populations under their control.

22 Apr 2014 description

Attacks on civilians have become an all too commonplace occurrence in conflicts, illustrated vividly in crises in Syria and the Central African Republic.

04 Apr 2014 description

‘Resilience’ is supposed to offer us a new way of thinking about development assistance. The concept focuses aid efforts on the people who most frequently suffer from crisis or who have the most limited choices in their lives. Resilience makes the overriding goal that people can cope better for themselves whatever the future may bring, and that they have more freedoms and choices in their lives. Much of the theorising around resilience, however, suggests that it depends on things like good governance, a wide range of economic opportunities and cohesive societies.

04 Apr 2014 description

‘Resilience’ is supposed to offer us a new way of thinking about development assistance. The concept focuses aid efforts on the people who most frequently suffer from crisis or who have the most limited choices in their lives. Resilience makes the overriding goal that people can cope better for themselves whatever the future may bring, and that they have more freedoms and choices in their lives. Much of the theorising around resilience, however, suggests that it depends on things like good governance, a wide range of economic opportunities and cohesive societies.

28 Feb 2014 description

This paper explores the role of the private sector in humanitarian action in Kenya. Kenya was selected as a case study because it has a vibrant and innovative private sector, a history of severe and repeated humanitarian crises, notably drought in the country’s arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs), and a track record of public–private partnerships for humanitarian action that have exploited new technologies and experimented with new models of fundraising.

28 Feb 2014 description

This paper addresses the role of the private sector in humanitarian action in Indonesia and broad patters of engagement between the humanitarian and the private sectors. In analysing these issues, the paper identifies the barriers to, and opportunities for, more systematic engagement between humanitarian actors and the private sector, and puts forward practical measures to make collaboration more consistent and successful.

28 Feb 2014 description

The response to climate change is often presented as an issue beyond politics, to be guided only by science and technical considerations. However, many of the places that need the most urgent international support for adaptation and resilience are suffering from conflict or have underlying political tensions which make future conflict a real threat. Yet discussions of conflict are usually absent from the plans to support resilience to climate change even in these conflict prone areas.