IHC Weekly Update
February 26, 2016
In this Update 
 

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Workshop Recap: Integrating Humanitarian Assistance 

IHC participated in a workshop this week hosted by the Shelter Working Group at InterAction. The goal of the half day event was to discuss the potential of integrated programming in humanitarian response. Urban centers are increasingly being called on to respond to humanitarian crises and IHC was interested in new methods appropriate to urban settings that include active cooperation and planning between sectors.

Global humanitarian response is often divided into organized clusters, so that after a disaster those working to provide one type of service can coordinate and deploy more efficiently.  However, support is growing for the idea of taking a spatial or "neighborhood" approach that views the needs of one group or neighborhood as a whole, encouraging joint planning and design across clusters. The workshop explored this approach, asking participants to discuss the challenges and opportunities it presents, as well as next steps to encourage greater integration.

Participants voiced strong support for greater integration and spatial consideration. However challenges remain: skills to manage such a broadened vision and scope of a neighborhood approach are often lacking in both proposal and implementing teams, and urban settings are far more dependent on soft skills such as negotiations and communication with local and national leaders.

IHC was glad to hear urbanization and cities being recognized as unique settings with unique challenges to the humanitarian community. IHC has long advocated for multi-sector integrated program design in both humanitarian and development assistance, and is glad to see these issues being discussed broadly. The Working Group will be sharing outcomes and next steps from the workshop in the coming weeks. 

Read more about the event here
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CDG Podcast: The Meaning of Results-Based Development

The Center for Global Development released a podcast this week discussing what "results-based development" really means, how it is not always the obvious or only goal, and how the framework has changed US assistance programming. 

The podcast features  Dr. Raj Shah, former Administrator of USAID under President Obama, and Michael Gerson, former presidential speechwriter and Assistant for Policy and Strategic Planning under George W. Bush. The two have co-authored a chapter  in the book  Moneyball for Government , which underlines the importance of data-driven decision-making in development.

Listen to the full podcast here
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Event: Humanity in War - Adapting to the Urban Theater

Please join the American Red Cross for a discussion of urban security and conflict. Combat zones are increasingly occurring in urban spaces. With an expected 6.3 billion people living in cities by 2050, international humanitarian law must adapt to the rise of urban warfare where an estimated 10 civilians die for every fighter killed in battle.  

The panel discussion will feature representatives from the American Red Cross,  UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs,  Israel Defense Forces, and the U.S. Department of State.

WHEN: February 29th , 2 9:30am-11:00am EDT 
WHERE: American Red Cross 
430 17th Street NW, Washington DC 
The event will be livestreamed at  humanityinwarblog.com

Find more information and RSVP here
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In the News and Around the Web
  • Read a CitiScope article highlighting the importance of this weeks' Habitat III regional meeting in Nigeria, and the critical role African cities will play in ensuring sustainable urbanization here.
  • Read a blog post from Brookings looking at the growth of cities from a lens of global security here

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