Lives in Crises

What Do People Tell Us About the Humanitarian Aid They Receive?

image of Lives in Crises

In May 2016, the World Humanitarian Summit represented a turning point for humanitarian policies. The Summit gave the impetus to seriously reflect on how to operate in environments where people’s needs don’t coincide anymore with existing mandates and sectors. The OECD believes that an effective humanitarian response is the one that addresses affected people’s needs in a timely and efficient manner. One way to measure effectiveness is to ask aid beneficiaries what they think about the aid they get. With this is mind, the OECD initiated a first round of surveys during the cycle 2016-2017 in six countries affected by different type of crisis : Lebanon, Afghanistan, Haiti, Iraq, Somalia and Uganda. Two years after the World humanitarian Summit, the OECD and Ground Truth Solutions took another round of surveys in the same countries, plus Bangladesh. The purpose of this second round of surveys is to assess whether the commitments made at the World Humanitarian Summit, including the Grand Bargain, are having a tangible impact on people’s lives in the most difficult contexts in the world. This paper provides some answers to this question.



We are seeing limited improvements to the system

The project reveals improvements in the way aid is delivered. Some of the Grand Bargain commitments, such as multiyear frameworks and joint needs assessments, are starting to deliver positive initiatives that now need to be systematised. Building on years of practice, the cash agenda is becoming more widespread. Support to education in crises has also become a key issue for donors, showing that humanitarian-development silos can be overcome, resulting in positive outcomes and better responses. Some serious challenges remain however. The localisation agenda is progressing too slowly, mainly because donors’ architecture is designed to favour direct contracts to trusted partners rather than to a dense network of local civil society organisations active in the field. The participation revolution has not happened either. The humanitarian system is still driven by international organisations’ mandates and programmes, rather than by the affected people at the centre of the response.



This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error