This research project seeks to promote the use of history in the practice and policy-making of humanitarian action. The aim is to help the sector better understand its history and make greater use of historical analysis and lessons in current discussions and debates aimed at improving humanitarian action.
The study will engage with histories, cultures and contributions to humanitarian action beyond those of Western Europe, North America and other developed countries, to better understand the different ways in which care for others during conflict and natural disaster has evolved around the globe. With studies in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East, it is intended the project will assist with engagement and dialogue.
At a time when the humanitarian system’s association with Western powers has faced strong criticism, yet there is little understanding of the variety of humanitarian histories, cultures and perspectives across the globe, history can help shape future responses, rethink aid architecture and provide a platform for engaging with a wide range of actors.
To join the project mailing list please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or join the debate by following the #aidhistory hashtag on Twitter.
Learning from the past to shape the future: lessons from the history of humanitarian action in Africa
Understanding humanitarian action in South Asia: responses to famine and displacement in nineteenth and twentieth century India
The Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG), in partnership with the Arab Thought Forum (ATF), is holding a conference looking at past responses to humanitarian crises in the Middle East and North Africa to...
A major conference about the history of humanitarianism in East and Southeast Asia will take place at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies on 29-30 January 2013. It will...