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Drawing on our Diversity: Humanitarian Leadership


This discussion paper summarises what is currently known about diversity and humanitarian leadership, and aims to identify how the two intersect in the international humanitarian system. It starts by unpacking what we mean by diversity – in gender, age, race, ethnicity and thinking. It explores the real and potential benefits of diversifying leadership identified across other sectors that could be applied to the humanitarian sector. It concludes with the proposition that humanitarian leadership does not currently draw on its diversity, to the detriment of humanitarian effectiveness, and suggests two hypotheses that could be tested in order to verify or refute this proposition.