Our publications

Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination in Emergencies: Towards a Predictable Model

The Regional Consultative Group (RCG) on Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination (CMCoord) for Asia and the Pacific is a key forum for supporting and elevating coordination, building relationships, and sharing learning to enhance and strengthen emergency response. 

This revised publication was produced through collaboration between the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster response, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs – Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, the Australian Civil-Military Centre and Humanitarian Advisory Group.

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Humanitarian Advisory Group’s Annual Report 2019-20

As we rounded out the decade in which Humanitarian Advisory Group (HAG) was born, the momentum of the previous years’ work pushed us forward into an era of change, transition and growth as a business, as humanitarians and as global citizens.

We present to you HAG’s Annual Report 2019-20. It has been a year of growth in ways we couldn’t have ever imagined last June. It has been a year of transitions, and growing pains, and joyous connection, gratitude and renewed understanding. Bring on the new decade!

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Two steps forward, one step back: Assessing the implications of COVID-19 on locally-led humanitarian response in Myanmar

COVID-19 has opened up opportunities to progress localisation in Myanmar, but at the same time exacerbated existing challenges, presenting an opportunity to explore the implications, challenges and opportunities for greater locally led humanitarian response in the country.

HAG partnered with Trócaire Myanmar and the Myanmar Development Network to conduct a high-level, rapid analysis aimed to provide insight into emerging themes and issues from the perspective of operational actors in country.

The research explores if and how the actions of key local and international humanitarian actors contributed to a change in localisation of humanitarian response in Myanmar during the pandemic, as well as systemic, pre-existing dynamics in the sector that limit the opportunities for locally led response.

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A Window of Opportunity: Learning from COVID-19 to progress locally led response and development (think piece) 

As COVID-19 was declared a pandemic and international travel restrictions, border closures and lockdowns ensued, large numbers of expatriate aid workers returned to their home countries. This significant change in the demography of the aid industry in many countries has led to a shift in roles for international, and national and local actors in humanitarian and development work. This think piece documents the research conducted over the past six months. It is intended to provide emerging evidence, and pose critical questions for international humanitarian and development actors to consider in their work across the region.


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Reach and Reality: Tracking the impact of our research 


This report tracks the impact and influence of the Humanitarian Horizons Research Program for the period from January to July 2020. Our M&E Framework articulates our research objectives and how we measure the influence of our research. We track this data on a six-monthly basis. This report is structured into three sections, which show overall program impact measured against reporting indicators, a deep dive into each of the four streams, and a snapshot of key learnings.


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Building a Blueprint for Change: Laying the foundations 


Our Blueprint for Change research stream seeks to build the evidence to support transformative change in the humanitarian system at the country level to deliver greater impact for crisis affected populations. Our research is currently focused on Indonesia, in partnership with the Pujiono Centre. This report presents our findings and learnings to date. 


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Creating Communication That Works: Humanitarians and the climate crisis 
Meaningful communication with the general public around the current and future impacts of climate change is complex, challenging and politicised. Environment and climate-focused agencies have been leading the charge on climate messaging for many years. In more recent times, however, as increasing evidence demonstrates the link between the changing climate and disasters worldwide, more humanitarian actors are joining the conversation.

This paper analyses how humanitarian agencies are communicating on climate change, and seeks to provide guidance on how the humanitarian sector can enhance messaging on climate change to promote wider engagement and action within the general public.

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No Turning Back: Local leadership in Vanuatu’s response toTropical Cyclone Harold
In the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic, Tropical Cyclone Harold, a category 5 cyclone, hit Vanuatu on Monday 06 April 2020. The Vanuatu government and the humanitarian community recognised early on that the response would be different by necessity. No international surge deployments were available, and technical expertise needed to be sought
internally. Within an increasingly strong Vanuatu humanitarian community, national and local actors stepped up to demonstrate that humanitarian local leadership is more than an aspiration in the Pacific. This practice paper is a rapid analysis of Vanuatu’s response to Tropical Cyclone Harold, 50 days after the disaster. In exploring the extent and implications of the locally led response, it is intended to stimulate discussion and inform localisation practice in Vanuatu and in the region

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Remote Humanitarian Facilitation: Guidance Note

COVID-19 has triggered a surge in online communication, with remote working and remote management becoming the new norm for most industries and businesses. Humanitarian practitioners have adapted to this new reality, using technology more than ever to communicate, collect and use information in order to design, manage and evaluate aid projects. Workshops, consultations, group discussions, team meetings, brainstorming sessions and other formal and less formal facilitated discussions are now happening online, raising questions of security, access to new technologies, and the practicalities and effectiveness of remote facilitation compared to face-to-face facilitation in various contexts. This note is intended to guide international and national operational actors on how to adapt and think about remote facilitation in the context of, and after, COVID-19.

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Remote Humanitarian Monitoring: Guidance Note

This note is intended to guide international and national operational actors on how to adapt and think about remote monitoring in the context of COVID-19. It provides a snapshot of key takeaways from previous research, and draws together emerging learning and guidance.2 HAG and GLOW collaborated on this guidance note, drawing on our collaborations on third-party monitoring for a range of humanitarian agencies. It is part of a guidance series on remote working produced as part of our Humanitarian Horizons research program.


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From Principle to Practice: Protecting civilians in violent contexts (field handbook)

This field handbook aims to provide the ‘what’, the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ of protecting civilians in violent contexts. In the two decades since the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) recognised that keeping people safe from harm during times of conflict is a matter of international peace and security, there has been a great deal of progress. However, alongside the substantial developments in diplomatic and legal frameworks, on-the-ground practice has struggled to keep up. For a variety of reasons, comprehensive, coordinated and consistent Protection of Civilians (PoC) action remains a work in progress, and a gap this handbook addresses.


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Remote humanitarian management and programming: guidance note

Ensuring the safety and protection of all staff, partners and program participants, whilst providing life-saving assistance in transitioning to remote management and programming models, is vital. This note is intended to guide international and national operational actors on how to adapt and think about remote management in the context of COVID-19. Humanitarian Advisory Group and CARE have collaborated on this guidance note. This publication is the first under our Work in the Age of COVID-19 Guidance Note series, produced as part of our Humanitarian Horizons research program.


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Becoming a Leader: A leadership learning pathway for PIEMA member agencies

The ‘Becoming a Leader’ learning pathway is a semi-structured framework designed to help PIEMA member agency staff strengthen and enhance their leadership skills. It allows individuals to develop and build upon existing leadership knowledge, skills and practices and to increase their competencies, based on their individual learning needs.

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Responding Together: Strategy for gender equality in disaster management in the Pacific

The ‘Responding Together’ strategy outlines how the PIEMA project should engage leaders across the alliance agencies and their leaders to promote gender equality and support greater effectiveness in disaster response. It is intended to outline what PIEMA wants to achieve (outcomes and outputs), how to do it (activities), and what to measure (indicators).

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Five ways to support locally led disaster response in the Pacific during COVID-19

The Pacific region has been responding to a double disaster. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Tropical Cyclone (TC) Harold struck the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and Tonga. The Category 5 storm caused significant damage and destruction across the four affected countries.This summary outlines how humanitarian actors can support locally led responses to TC Harold. It summarises lessons from previous responses, findings from localisation research in the Pacific, and emerging thinking about locally led responses in the context of COVID-19.


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Elevating Evidence: Localisation in the 2019 Bangladesh Flood Response

Localisation of humanitarian action in Bangladesh has been an important focus in recent years. This report provides an analysis of localisation in the 2019 monsoon flood response and serves as a baseline for future responses, undertaken by NIRAPAD, supported by Humanitarian Advisory Group (HAG) and the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office. This analysis included the adaptation of a localisation measurement approach already used in four Pacific countries, to serve as a common measurement framework.
The report includes a Bangla translation of the executive summary, key findings and recommendations, which are also presented separately.

Read the report | রিপোর্ট পড়ুন


In Case of Emergency: System-wide response in the era of COVID-19.

The world is facing a global health emergency. The context is evolving rapidly, and the humanitarian, public health, social, political and economic implications are widespread. Humanitarian actors are grappling with understanding and preparing for the impact of COVID-19 on existing crisis-affected populations around the globe.

This Think Piece looks to the future – beyond the impact on current humanitarian crises to explore what a large-scale rapid response might look like in the context of COVID-19. It considers how the humanitarian sector could prepare to respond in the event of an L3 emergency during the global pandemic.

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Submissions to inform Australia’s international development policy

Australia’s role in humanitarian response in the Indo-Pacific region, and globally, is evolving. This review provides an opportunity to reflect on Australia’s existing humanitarian aid and to leverage learning to strengthen future effectiveness.

Our strategic research program, Humanitarian Horizons 2018-2021, produces evidence to support more effective humanitarian action. We have a strong understanding of current Australian humanitarian programming and policy, as evidenced by our provision of technical support to DFAT, and leadership of multiple design and evaluation processes for Australia’s humanitarian programs. Some of the common issues and themes that have emerged from our work are outlined in this submission.

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Building a Blueprint for Change: Humanitarian reform at the country level Research Synopsis 

Humanitarian Advisory Group is undertaking action research which aims to provide an evidence base for progressing transformative change to the humanitarian system at the country level. The research is currently focused on Indonesia, in partnership with the Pujiono Centre and is part of the Humanitarian Horizons Research Program 2019-2021. Building a Blueprint for Change aims to catalyse action for country-level reform.

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Humanitarian Horizons 2018-21: Monitoring and Evaluation Framework

Humanitarian Horizons is Humanitarian Advisory Group’s three-year strategic research program, consisting of four key streams. It aims to contribute evidence and progress thinking and action towards better humanitarian outcomes for crisis-affected populations in the Indo-Pacific region. This framework outlines our approach to monitoring the impact of this research stream as it progresses across 2018 to 2021.

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Positive Disruption? China’s humanitarian aid

China’s global aid program is evolving and expanding prompting considerable interest from the international humanitarian sector. Much attention has been paid to developments in Chinese aid. Most work examines the geopolitical, development aid and security policy angles, rather than the operational and policy implications for humanitarian aid. There is less understanding of how Chinese and traditional actors can engage on humanitarian reform. This practice paper aims to address that gap, as part of the Humanitarian Horizons research program, which seeks to stimulate discussion and inform practice.

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Measuring Localisation: Framework and tools

In 2018-19 PIANGO and Humanitarian Advisory Group, together with national CSO umbrella bodies, collaborated to design and undertake a localisation baselining process in four Pacific countries: Vanuatu, Tonga, Fiji and the Solomon Islands. This document outlines an approach, including a framework and some tools, that can be used to measure the activity and impact of localised humanitarian action.

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Localisation in the Solomon Islands: Demonstrating Change

This is the final instalment in a series of four baselines seeking to measure localisation in the Pacific, published in partnership with PIANGO and DSE. Building on previous reports for Vanuatu, Tonga, and Fiji, released earlier this year, this research utilises the Measuring Localisation Framework to provide a snapshot of progress on localising humanitarian action in the Solomon Islands.

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Data on Diversity: Humanitarian leadership under the spotlight

The latest piece from the Diverse Leadership stream, this report presents findings from the State of Diversity global sector survey, the largest of its kind in the sector globally, to demonstrate the current state of play of diversity and inclusion in humanitarian leadership teams, and to explore what exactly this might mean for the future of the sector.

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Localisation in Fiji: Demonstrating change

This is the third instalment in a series of four baselines seeking to measure localisation in the Pacific, published in partnership with PIANGO and the Fiji Council of Social Services. Building on previous reports for Vanuatu and Tonga released earlier this year, this research utilises the Measuring Localisation Framework to provide a snapshot of progress on localising humanitarian action in Fiji.

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Annual Report 2018-19

In our 2017-18 annual report, we were delighted to have defined our beliefs into a set of five core values. This year, we are proud to say that those values were an intrinsic part of everything we did. In every project that we’ve undertaken, we have drawn on each HAG value in one way or another – they have become the backbone of our culture, our approach and our products. This year we’d like to show you just how far these values have taken us, and update you on our achievements, our staff, our programs and all that makes us HAG.

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Localisation in Tonga: Demonstrating change

This baseline builds on the previous localisation baselining work in Vanuatu. The international humanitarian sector is currently developing ways to measure progress on localisation following the commitments made at the World Humanitarian Summit in 2016. This has also been a key issue for humanitarian actors in the Pacific region. Generating an evidence base on localisation is important in order to demonstrate what change is happening and the impact it is having. This report provides a baseline snapshot of localisation in Tonga.

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Independent Evaluation of the Syria crisis humanitarian and resilience package

The Syria crisis is now moving into its ninth year. The ongoing conflict has had enormous impacts on Syrians, host communities and neighbouring countries. Australia has supported the response since 2011 by working with partners to provide humanitarian protection and assistance. In 2016, Australia committed to a three-year $220 million Syria Crisis Humanitarian and Resilience Package. This was Australia’s first multiyear package in response to a protracted crisis.

This report details the findings and recommendations from an evaluation of Australia’s investments under the three-year Syria Package. The findings and recommendations are intended to inform Australia’s ongoing response to the Syria crisis, as well as multiyear humanitarian packages of assistance in other protracted crises.

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Diverse and Inclusive Leadership Workshop Report

How do we strengthen humanitarian leadership to make it fit for purpose? The international humanitarian sector needs a greater diversity of approaches, funding sources, and thinking to confront its rapidly changing landscape. Evidence highlights that diversity and inclusion in leadership is key to being able to address new and emergent challenges. Humanitarian Advisory Group is currently undertaking research to understand how diverse and inclusive leadership can contribute to tackling key challenges faced by the humanitarian system.

This workshop explored potential methodologies and approaches to conducting Humanitarian Advisory Group’s Diverse Humanitarian Leadership research under its Humanitarian Horizons program. It convened a range of representatives from international non-government organisations, the United Nations, the Red Cross Movement and the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

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Charting the New Norm? Local Leadership in the First 100 Days of the Sulawesi Earthquake Response

Humanitarian response to the 7.4 magnitude earthquake and ensuing tsunami that devastated the coastal township of Palu, Indonesia on 28 September 2019, charted a new norm. The government of Indonesia acted quickly to restrict international aid and emphasise the role of national and local actors in the emergency response and early recovery phase. This led to creative changes to the Asia-Pacific’s traditional approach to humanitarian relief in the aftermath of disaster

Does the Sulawesi response bring us closer to the new and improved way of delivering humanitarian assistance as committed in 2016 World Humanitarian Summit? To answer, we examine how this response differs from previous ones, and how different actors adapted to this change.

The Sulawesi earthquake humanitarian response demonstrates how localisation of humanitarian aid is becoming an inevitable emerging new norm in the Asia-pacific region.

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Protecting People in Locally Led Disaster Response

How will the shift to increased local and national leadership in humanitarian response impact on protection outcomes for affected communities?

Will it reinforce negative gender and cultural biases and leave marginalised groups without adequate protection? Or will it strengthen protection outcomes as local, national and international actors better recognise and strengthen each other’s complementary protection roles and responsibilities?

‘Protecting people in locally-led disaster response’ affirms that there are distinct and important continued protection roles for local, national and international actors in the Pacific. With a better understanding of the core national actor roles and the potential complementary international actor roles there is the opportunity for actors to better support each other and better protect affected communities.

This research is co-funded by the Australian Government, through DFAT, and the Australian Red Cross as part of a research collaboration between the Humanitarian Policy Group and Humanitarian Advisory Group.

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Localisation in Vanuatu: Demonstrating change

The international humanitarian sector is currently developing ways to measure progress on localisation following the commitments made at the World Humanitarian Summit in 2016. This has also been a key issue for humanitarian actors in the Pacific region. Generating an evidence base on localisation is important in order to demonstrate what change is happening and the impact it is having. This report provides a baseline snapshot of localisation in Vanuatu. It pilots the Measuring Localisation Framework developed through a consultation process in three countries led by PIANGO and HAG.

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Read the Bislama summary report

Annual Report 2017-2018

As we enter the festive season, it’s time to reflect on the year that was – and it was a very good year indeed. We published our first independently funded think pieces – something we had dreamed about when starting HAG – a way to put leading-edge ideas into the sector as our unique contributions. We found our feet as a social enterprise and achieved B Corp recertification, demonstrating that our contributions to the sector are ethical, authentic and meaningful. We worked in 11 countries and with national consultants in Vanuatu, the Philippines, Pakistan and Bangladesh. We were thrilled to welcome Jo-Hannah Lavey, Sally Airs-Shevach and Seeta Giri to our team and proudly hosted a CareerTrackers intern for the first time. And to finish off the year, we are so pleased to share our second Annual Report.

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Extractives and Emergencies: the Papua New Guinea Earthquake Response 

On the 26th of February 2018, a magnitude 7.5 earthquake struck the Southern Highlands province of Papua New Guinea (PNG), affecting 544,000 people. In addition to traditional humanitarian actors, including international nongovernmental organisations (NGOs), civil society, government and United Nations (UN) agencies, the private sector – notably companies working in the extractive industries (mining, oil and gas) – contributed significantly to the response at unprecedented speed and scale. This practice paper is a rapid analysis of the role played by extractive organisations (‘extractives’) in the 2018 PNG earthquake response. It explores the strengths and weaknesses of their engagement, and proposes that for humanitarian organisations to work more effectively with extractives they need to engage with them more intentionally – to understand, to learn and to plan together. The paper provides a series of questions to guide engagement, in ‘Digging Deeper’ text boxes throughout the paper, for both humanitarian organisations and extractives.

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Tropical Cyclone Gita Response Program Evaluation 

Tropical Cyclone (TC) Gita, a Category 4 cyclone, struck Tonga in February 2018. CARE, Live and Learn, and MORDI (‘the partnership’) responded to the immediate needs of communities on Tongatapu and ‘Eua islands, delivering emergency shelter and hygiene kits. In the recovery phase the partnership supported communities with shelter, repairs to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) infrastructure, and food security and livelihood recovery efforts, including a specific project focused on the recovery priorities of seven women’s groups on ‘Eua island.

CARE commissioned this evaluation to assess the assistance provided through the response and recovery program in the first six months (February – August 2018). The evaluation focused on four main areas of enquiry: the partnership, the response, gender and inclusion, and localisation.

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Localisation: Opportunities and challenges for protection in disaster response 

Much debate about reform and improving the effectiveness of humanitarian aid in recent years has revolved around ‘localisation’, a prominent theme of the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit (WHS). As humanitarian agencies implement the localisation commitments they articulated at the WHS, examining the impact of a localised response for protection outcomes has emerged as a topic deserving greater attention. This research initiative seeks to understand the impact of localised humanitarian protection in disaster preparedness and response, including identifying both the opportunities and challenges for effective protection in a locally-led response. This initial paper explores the existing literature on protection and localisation in disasters as the first stage of a joint research initiative of the Humanitarian Advisory Group (HAG), the Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG), and the Australian Red Cross.

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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.

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Linking Women, Peace and Security with Disaster Response and Management: Issue Paper

Sustainable peace and prosperity require the full and equal participation of women. So far, the crucial role of women in disaster management and in building resilient communities has received less recognition than it deserves. This paper aims to provide recommendations on how Australia’s next National Action Plan (NAP) on women, peace and security can be responsive to natural disasters, both within Australia and overseas.

Fanny Berg, who recently graduated from Uppsala University in Sweden with a degree in Peace and Development Studies, wrote this Issue Paper during her internship with Humanitarian Advisory Group in 2018.

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Tracking Progress on Localisation: A Pacific Perspective

In June 2018, the Pacific Islands Association of Non-Government Organisations (PIANGO) and Humanitarian Advisory Group brought together Pacific humanitarian actors from Fiji, Tonga and Vanuatu to discuss progress on localisation and to explore priorities for measuring change. This outcomes paper provides an overview of the consultation discussions and highlights Pacific priorities for measuring change. It will inform the development of a framework for measuring localisation in Pacific case study countries across the next three years.

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From an Ombudsman to a Humanitarian Passport: How Should We Be Addressing Abuse in the International Aid Sector? 

Tackling sexual abuse and exploitation in the aid sector has never been so crucial. This think piece explores key issues in relation to safeguarding and raises questions about what recent developments mean for the Australian context. It is intended to contribute ideas and promote thinking about how the Australian aid sector can both learn from and influence global conversations and action.

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Taking Sexual and Gender Minorities Out Of The Too-Hard Basket

Sexual and gender minorities’ unique protection and assistance needs remain largely unconsidered and unaddressed in international crisis response. Of 2018’s ten largest humanitarian response plans, none mention inclusion of sexual and gender minorities. The latest practice paper challenges the premise that it is too hard to improve the inclusion of sexual and gender minorities in humanitarian action.

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Transforming Surge Capacity Project Evaluation

This report presents the findings and recommendations from the final evaluation of the TSC Project conducted during the period November 2017 – February 2018. The evaluation reviews progress and evaluates the extent to which the project was successful in achieving its goals. The evaluation built on the wealth of knowledge acquired throughout the project and complements the learning captured in the Future of Humanitarian Surge report. The evaluation complements the broader DEPP External Evaluation during 2016–2018.

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Women’s Voice in Humanitarian Media. No Surprises. 

Part of the Humanitarian Horizons Research Programme

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the achievements of women. It also marks a call for action to accelerate gender parity. Gender parity does not exist for women’s voices in the media. Neither does it exist in humanitarian media. Gender parity in humanitarian media is important to address inequalities in humanitarian action and how people perceive the role of women in humanitarian action, including by women themselves.

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Intention to Impact: Measuring Localisation 

Part of the Humanitarian Horizons Research Programme

The humanitarian sector is currently grappling with how to operationalise the localisation of humanitarian aid. However, without methods of measuring change across the spectrum of localisation processes, our understanding of what works, what doesn’t and why is limited. Building on existing initiatives, the research paper suggests an approach to measuring localisation across the areas of partnerships, funding, capacity, coordination and complementarity, policy influence and visibility, and participation.

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When the Rubber Hits the Road: Local Leadership in the first 100 days of the Rohingya Crisis Response

Part of the Humanitarian Horizons Research Programme

Researched and written in partnership with Nirapad

The international community has committed to a humanitarian system that is locally owned and led. This means a shift of power, resources and decision-making to local and national responders in humanitarian action. But how is this manifested during a humanitarian response of the scale and complexity of the Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh? This rapid real-time analysis considers how the global localisation agenda has influenced the current operational response, and prompts questions about what happens when localisation moves from theory to practice.

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Humanitarian Advisory Group Annual Report 2016-2017 

The first HAG annual report represents an important milestone in our journey. It shows how our organisation is coming together and gives clarity to the story we want to tell. Thank you for travelling with us! We hope you enjoy reading about our last year.

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Going Local: Achieving a more appropriate and fit-for-purpose humanitarian ecosystem in the Pacific 

This report presents the findings of research conducted across the Pacific region in 2017 on the localisation of humanitarian action. Findings respond to the main research question “what would a successfully localised disaster management ecosystem in the Pacific look like, and what changes do Red Cross and the broader humanitarian system need to make to get there?”

Australian Red Cross commissioned this research to improve understanding of the challenges and opportunities for localisation of humanitarian action in the Pacific region. This research is intended as a first step towards articulating the change required to achieve a more localised approach to humanitarian action.

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Humanitarian System Change Roundtable Outcomes

In October 2017, Humanitarian Advisory Group hosted a Melbourne-based roundtable to examine humanitarian system change and discuss the implications for Australia-based actors as a follow-up event to the Pacific Humanitarian Partnership meeting in Suva, Fiji.

Christina Bennett, Head of Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG) and Heba Aly, Director of IRIN News shared their global perspectives on the future of the humanitarian action and the underlying need for broader systemic change. These introductory comments framed a broader discussion about what this means in Australia and Asia and Pacific regions.

Pip Henty

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Independent Think Piece – Joint funding mechanisms for humanitarian response

Currently, several countries have operational coalitions or mechanisms for joint appeals for humanitarian response. Some mechanisms have been operational for over 50 years, whilst others have only been recently established. The most recently initiated was the Global Emergency Response Coalition in the United States launched on 17 July 2017. In recent years, several other countries including Australia, have examined the possibility of establishing joint appeal mechanisms for humanitarian response. This think piece explores the evidence for effectiveness, including advantages and challenges of existing joint mechanisms to enhance understanding on relevance and applicability in the Australian context.

Josie Flint

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Humanitarian Partnership Agreement – Saving lives through Collective Action

Peter Chamberlain, Pip Henty, and Beth Eggleston

The Humanitarian Partnership Agreement (2011-17) has transformed the way the Australian humanitarian non-government organisation (NGO) sector responds to disasters. This document provides a summary of the progress made by DFAT and its NGO partners in achieving the aims of the Humanitarian Partnership in the years that followed.

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Localising the Research Process: Walking the Talk Insight Series

Ayla Black and Kate Sutton

The Red Cross and Swiss government were co-conveners of the Grand Bargain work-stream on localisation at the World Humanitarian Summit. Reflecting the agreed commitments and building on a joint pledge between Australian Red Cross (ARC) and the Australian government on strengthening local humanitarian action, particularly in the Pacific, ARC has identified localisation as a key policy and influencing priority. In its ambitions to further understand the challenges and opportunities of localisation, ARC commissioned research on achieving a more appropriate and fit for purpose humanitarian ecosystem in the Pacific. This insight series will capture and explore the experience of walking the talk with regard to this research.

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Humanitarian Partnership Agreement: The Impact of Disaster Risk Reduction Programming 

Pip Henty, Kate Sutton, and Beth Eggleston

Community-based disaster risk reduction (DRR) is the foundation to reducing loss of lives and livelihoods and safeguarding development gains. Non-government Organisations (NGOs) have a strong track record working with communities to strengthen DRR and emergency preparedness. This report captures the story of six Australian NGOs coming together to work on DRR and the impact on the communities and organisations they worked with. It is timely to review the impact these efforts have had on lives, livelihoods and health of disaster-prone communities. How have they reinforced community efforts to strengthen their own resilience to the increasing threat of natural hazards?

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Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination in Emergencies: Towards a Predictable Model 

Josie Flint, Beth Eggleston and Sally Airs Shevach

This publication is an initiative of the Regional Consultative Group (RCG) on Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination for Asia and the Pacific. The RCG seeks to not only link the region with the Global Consultative Group on Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination, but also to provide a learning platform for good practice. This publication focuses on Asia and the five priority countries in this region that are highly vulnerable to large-scale natural disasters: Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal, and the Philippines.

This publication aims to address this recommendation by outlining the civil-military coordination mechanisms in the five priority countries and how these are activated during disaster response efforts in line with regional frameworks and guidance. The publication provides the context for humanitarian civil-military coordination in Asia at the regional level and considers existing national guidance and structures for civil-military coordination in disaster response, linkages to global and regional guidance and emerging best practices. It also focuses on contributing to enhancing predictability in civil-military coordination in disaster response throughout the region, through outlining the potential adaptation of the Humanitarian-Military Operation Coordination Concept (HuMOCC) in each of the five countries.

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Humanitarian Assistance In The Pacific: An evaluation of the effectiveness of Australia’s response to Cyclone Pam

Kate Sutton, Humanitarian Advisory Group Director, co-led this evaluation with Karen Ovington, Office of Development Effectiveness DFAT

This evaluation reviewed Australia’s response to Cyclone Pam to identify how DFAT can better support Pacific countries to prepare for, respond to, and recover from rapid onset emergencies. Australia’s response was evaluated in the context of the policy frameworks at the time, notably the Humanitarian Action Policy 2011 and the Protection in Humanitarian Action Framework 2013. For the evaluation to be forward looking, recommendations were formulated in the context of updated policy frameworks, recognizing that the policy landscape has changed since the response.

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Women in Humanitarian Leadership

Ayla Black, Kate Sutton and Pip Henty

Globally, women remain underrepresented in the workforce at every level, across sectors. At the current rates of improvement, it will take 118 years for women to close the gender gap. This report examines what is known about the disparity between men and women in humanitarian leadership, and to what extent women are being marginalised in leadership and with what impact. The research also examines what has been learnt across other sectors in relation to women in leadership and asks whether these lessons can be applied to the humanitarian sector to bring about important change.

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Inclusive Humanitarian Action: A Study into Humanitarian Partnership Agency Practice in the Nepal Earthquake Response

Over the last three decades humanitarian actors have made significant steps towards disaster response activities that are more inclusive. This study, commissioned by Humanitarian Partnership Agreement (HPA) agencies, examines inclusive humanitarian practice by five participating agencies (CARE, Caritas, Oxfam, Plan International and World Vision). It takes a look behind the policy commitments and known gaps to explore practice at a programmatic level: What are agencies doing? What are they not doing and why not? What could they do more of, and better, to strengthen inclusion?

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UNFPA 2016 State of World Population Report

Chapter 5: Igniting the Potential; Ayla Black and Louise Searle

At 10, a girl arrives at a vulnerable point in her life. She must negotiate a tricky transition to adulthood, with its rapid changes in body and brain, and dramatic shifts in family and social expectations. Although risks abound for both girls and boys, gender discrimination makes these risks worse for girls in almost every way. The world has already done well in many ways for the 10-year-old boy. It is past time to do equally well for the 10-year-old girl.

For the first time in history, the 2030 Agenda explicitly commits countries to leaving no one behind as they seek to develop. This puts the world on notice that no 10-year-old girl can remain on the margins, abandoned to poverty, illness or ignorance. This chapter examines what is already being done around the world to contribute to realising this vision.

The 3 ways that social entrepreneurship can contribute in the humanitarian space

There is a global movement underway. It challenges our assumptions about how businesses make money and what they do with it. It demands that businesses make social change central to their business models; not an add-on or afterthought. This movement is social entrepreneurship. Within the humanitarian world we are motivated and enlivened by a desire to see social change. Yet somehow we are less comfortable with the use of business to achieve that social change. And yet the sustainability and efficiency of the business world has much to offer as a model for humanitarian problems. So how can social entrepreneurship contribute to humanitarian action?

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Why we need more women in humanitarian leadership

Women are under-represented in leadership globally and across sectors. In 2016 in Australia one quarter of organisations reported that they still have no women (none!) in key management positions. Analysis of gender equality in the humanitarian world tells a similar story. As of January 2016, there are 29 UN Humanitarian Coordinators globally and only 9 of these are women. As the professional humanitarian workforce worldwide consists largely of women – up to 75% – this disparity is absurdly at odds with the rhetoric about empowerment and equality within the sector. Why is it important? Why hasn’t it been done already? What can and must be done?

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Selling protection: Does the protection imperative require a social marketing approach?

Today, too much of the clarity and conviction of protection messaging and communication seems to have been lost. Protection is still considered a priority by many humanitarian actors; indeed it is a core mandate to organisations such as UNHCR and ICRC. However, a legalistic and theoretical narrative seems to have replaced the compelling narrative of the late 1990s and 2000s. This contributes to a growing sense of confusion and frustration with regards to protection amongst humanitarian actors. So why has the protection discourse lost the clarity and conviction it carried in the late 1990s? And how can we reclaim it? This paper suggests that some of the explanation lies in the increasing complexity and inaccessibility of protection messaging. It further suggests that part of the solution may lie in applying a social marketing approach to protection communication.

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Independent Interim Review of the Australian National Action Plan on Women Peace and Security 2012-2018

The Australian National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security 2012-2018 (Australian NAP) is the Australian Government’s primary mechanism for fulfilling its commitment to turn the landmark United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325) and the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda into action.This report provides the findings from the independent interim review of the Australian NAP. The focus of the interim review was on tracking the whole of government progress on the implementation of the recommended actions under the Australian NAP, analysing their relevance against the intended outcomes, and analysing the relevance of the Australian NAP to inform actions to implement the WPS Agenda more broadly.

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Civil Society Report Card

Civil-Military-Police Coordination in Disaster Management: Perspectives from South East Asian Countries

The South East Asian region is highly vulnerable to rapid onset natural disasters. Effective coordination among diverse civilian, military and police actors is critical to ensuring an effective response to disasters.This research paper and stakeholder guide provide practical insights on civil-military-police coordination in disaster management and response both at the regional level, and in four specific countries: Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia. The research findings and guidance are aimed at assisting regional and global responders to better understand the contexts in which they may operate in times of natural disasters.

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Civil Society Report Card
Annual Civil Society Report on Australia’s National Action Plan on Women, Peace & Security

In April 2013, Australian civil society came together with government to hold the inaugural Annual Civil-Society Dialogue on Women, Peace and Security. The aim of the Dialogue was to monitor progress against each of the NAP’s strategies and ensure implementation of the NAP remains both accountable to civil society and informed by its input and deliberations. This Civil Society Report Card on Australia’s NAP is the result of that process, and outlines the perceptions and opinions of civil-society members, based on the presentations and reports of those government departments attending the Dialogue. The report card outlines how civil society perceives progress of the NAP against its stated indicators and outlines key achievements, recommendations and areas for improvement.

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The Role of Mentoring in Professional Humanitarian Action

This think piece explores the role of mentoring in professional humanitarian action. Drawing on personal experience in the nursing and humanitarian sectors, former Humanitarian Advisory Group Director Louise Searle makes the case for mentoring programmes as part of the process of professional practice and development of expertise for practitioners.

Women in Humanitarian Action

This think piece explores the role of women in humanitarian response. It explores what is known about the differentiated impacts of disasters on women and men, and how women can be important change agents in humanitarian contexts, advocating for an increased focus on promotion of women in humanitarian action, more research on the benefits of female leadership and knowledge about constraints and enablers for increased participation.

Civil Society Report Card
UNFPA 2015 State of World Population Report

Chapter 2: The Disproportionate Toll on Women and Adolescent Girls

Humanitarian crises disproportionately impact sex, marital status, economic status or expose women and adolescent girls to layers of disproportionate risk. This chapter highlights that research and experience are contributing to a more nuanced perspective on how women and young people are affected by crises. However, unpacking these differences of experience is often complicated by a dearth of robust data, the collection of which can be very difficult in crisis-affected settings.

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 Strengthening Accountability to Affected Populations through Network Learning

Strengthening Accountability to Affected Populations through Network Learning

Jo-Hannah Lavey and Louise Searle, International Council of Voluntary Agencies (ICVA)

Strengthened accountability to affected populations is central to humanitarian action. While much has been achieved, there is also considerable scope to further improve accountability to people affected by conflict and disaster. Across a broad spectrum of networks (global, regional, national and sub- national) this study found evidence that network learning contributes to improved AAP practice, and has the potential to contribute further.

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Australia’s Humanitarian Response to the Syria Crisis - Evaluation Report
Australia’s Humanitarian Response to the Syria Crisis – Evaluation Report

Office for Development Effectiveness, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)

This evaluation examines the effectiveness of Australia’s humanitarian response to the Syrian crisis. It considers both the efficacy of material assistance provided and Australia’s diplomatic efforts. The evaluation identifies ways in which Australia’s ongoing response can be strengthened in the context of what has become a protracted, and expanding, humanitarian crisis.

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Humanitarian Advisory Group
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