The debate over humanitarian reform is one of money, principles, and institutional change. But for many organisations involved, these boil down to one thing: power – and specifically for local organisations, the unwillingness of their international counterparts to give up any of it.
A long-standing tension between large Western-led international NGOs and smaller, locally-based groups who want a bigger role in emergency relief moved into high gear last week, where it was on public display at an international conference in Geneva.
Worldwide consultations held in the lead-up to next year’s World Humanitarian Summit, the biggest push in decades to reform the way aid is delivered, have recommended putting affected people and local organisations at the heart of a new model of humanitarian response.
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