Going local: achieving a more appropriate and fit-for-purpose humanitarian ecosystem in the Pacific

15 Oct 2017

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?”

Localisation of humanitarian action refers to the shift of resources and decision making to local and national responders in humanitarian action. Localisation was given momentum in the regional consultations leading up to the World Humanitarian Summit and with the adoption of the ‘Grand Bargain’ at the World Humanitarian Summit by a number of key donors and implementing agencies. Despite the momentum, localisation of humanitarian action has remained largely conceptual, rather than a coherent and operational framework for change. The specific changes required to localise humanitarian action— at what levels, and by whom — have not been articulated. This has caused some confusion and disillusionment about the localisation agenda among Pacific-based actors and there is strong desire to ensure localisation is not simply a fad, but rather a platform for concrete change.

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.

This research project is commissioned by Australian Red Cross with financial support from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The report was prepared by the Centre for Humanitarian Leadership, Fiji National University and Humanitarian Advisory Group.

This publication has been funded by the Australian Government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The views expressed in this publication are the author’s alone and are not necessarily the views of the Australian Government.

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