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Turning the Tables: Insights from locally-led humanitarian partnerships in conflict situations

Craig Zelizer

June 11, 2020

Turning the Tables: Insights from locally-led humanitarian partnerships in conflict situations

Taking a fresh and critical look at localisation, this report calls on international humanitarian organisations and donors to rethink their approaches to partnerships in conflict-affected crisis situations.

There is growing global commitment among donors and international non-governmental organisations to transfer a greater share of resources and power over aid in crises to those most affected by them, with more going to local organisations – a process known as ‘localisation’.

Locally-led responses to crisis are not only necessary, they can also be more sensitive to conflict dynamics and more attuned to opportunities for building peace and social cohesion.

Commissioned by Save the Children Sweden, this research rethinks what localisation is, why it is important, and looks at progress in translating international localisation commitments into practice so far. It looks at issues and challenges that arise in making localisation a reality in conflict-affected situations.

The report presents learning from different partnership models in practice of locally-led crisis response where it’s worked well in Myanmar, Syria and Uganda. It presents emerging conclusions and recommendations aimed at donors and INGOs committed to advancing localisation in conflict-affected situations.

Read the report: Turning the tables: Insights from locally-led humanitarian partnerships in conflict-affected situations.

Read more about our work on conflict sensitivity.

*Although Saferworld conducted the research in 2019 before COVID-19, responses to the pandemic are by necessity localised. This makes questions about the power dynamics and practicalities of locally-led aid delivery particularly pertinent.

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