Side Events

If you are interested in organizing terror book a side event at the conference please get in touch via: info[@] Examples of side events: Round table, small meeting on a specific topic, film viewing, art showing etc. There will be space for a few tables in our exhibition space. The costs for a manned exhibition table is 150 euros for 3 days which includes lunch, coffee and tea for one person.

There will be table space for flyers and brochures for conference participants as well.

27 August

Book Presentation and Launch From emergency to the politics of protracted crisis: The long-term effects of aid
Time: 15.40 – 17.10
By Susanne Jaspars and Bram Jansen

Emergency aid is often planned as a temporary life-saving intervention. These days, however, many crises are long-term and aid is often provided for decades.  In such circumstances, people, governments and societies learn and develop in ways which are often not anticipated by those who provide the aid, and by those affected by it, but which is essential to understand if aid is to be effective.

In this joint book launch, Susanne Jaspars and Bram Jansen illustrate the long-term effects of aid practices from two different dimensions: long-term food aid in Sudan, and a long-term refugee camp in Kenya.  Susanne, in her book, Food Aid in Sudan: A History of Power, Politics and Profit, examines fifty years of food aid in Sudan.  She finds that although the objectives of food aid have proliferated, they rarely had their intended effect.  Long-term food aid did, however, benefit the Sudan government and its closely-aligned private sector. It contributed to their learning to control international organisations, the establishment of Sudan’s own food aid apparatus and its use to manage populations.  Crisis-affected populations themselves have received little food assistance and have been left to become resilient to permanent emergency.  Bram, in his book, Kakuma Refugee Camp: Humanitarian Urbanism in Kenya’s Accidental City, examines the evolution of this camp since the late 1980s, its transformation into an ‘accidental city’ and the everyday lives of the people who live there. The thrust of the book is that the camp and the ways it is governed and lived has become routine, yet coming to terms with its increasingly permanent features is problematic. This book explores the lives of camp dwellers as characterized by a humanitarian urbanism, in which the permanent uncertainties of exile are married with the everyday contours of life, coping and organisation in a context of elaborate humanitarian governance.


– Dorothea Hilhorst, Professor of Humanitarian Aid and Reconstruction,Institute of Social Studies, The Hague.
– Youssif El Tayeb, Executive Director, Darfur Development and Reconstruction Agency, Khartoum.
– Alex de Waal, Research Professor and Executive Director of the World Peace Foundation, Tufts University, Boston.

The DRA Innovation Fund: how the Dutch Relief Alliance (DRA) is closely working with humanitarian organisations, private companies, universities and other knowledge institutions to innovatively improve their work to tackle key humanitarian challenges and increase impact The DRA Innovation Fund: Its Objectives and Agenda, Offering Opportunities for Collaboration along the Science-NGO Interface
Time: 15.40 – 17.10
Organisers: Reinier van Hoffen & Martine Bergwerff

The Dutch Relief Alliance is a partnership of 16 Dutch humanitarian organisations and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which aims to increase efficiency and effectiveness through close collaboration in the Netherlands and in the field. One of the key strategic priorities of the Dutch Relief Alliance is to be more innovative, ‘enabling Dutch humanitarian NGO’s to be at the forefront of new approaches of delivering high quality humanitarian action’. To reach this objective a substantial amount of funding is made available on an annual basis for which DRA members are forming partnerships with researchers and entrepreneurs. The DRA Innovation Fund Call 2018 has just been closed and the applications have been reviewed. During this session, the granted proposals will be briefly pitched and a discussion will be facilitated with the participants how the DRA can further work with other stakeholders to reach their goals.

 Evening Event:

Launch of the Journal of Humanitarian Affairs and commemoration of the 10-year anniversary of the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute
– Drinks will be served

“Celebrating a decade of humanitarian research, teaching and learning”

The Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute (HCRI) was founded in 2008 by colleagues across disciplines such as history, medicine, development studies and drama.

Under the iconic leadership of Dr. Rony Brauman (President of Médecins sans Frontièrs (MSF) from 1982 to 1994), Prof Peter Gatrell, Prof Tim Jacoby, Dr. Tanja Müller, Prof Tony Redmond, Prof Bertrand Taithe and Prof James Thompson originally established HCRI as an interdisciplinary research institute.

Since then, HCRI has responded to international demand for research-informed teaching in humanitarian studies by developing a range of postgraduate and undergraduate programmes.

Ten years on, from its original four students in 2009-10, HCRI has grown to become one of the most significant institutions for humanitarian teaching and research in the UK, and worldwide.

 28 August

Book Presentation and Launch
“Author meets Critics” Roundtable Discussion
Time: 11:00 – 12:30
By Oscar A. Gómez

Crisis Management beyond the Humanitarian-Development Nexus. Edited by Atsushi Hanatani, Oscar A. Gómez, and Chigumi Kawaguchi. Routledge Humanitarian Series, September 2018.

Discussants: Julia Steets, Doris Schopper, Christina Bennett, Alex de Waal & Francois Grunewald

Demonstration and Workshop: ActivityInfo, online M&E tool for humanitarian operations
Time: 11:00 – 12:30
Location: Computer Room 2.26
By Be Data Driven

ActivityInfo is an online Information Management tool used by hundreds of humanitarian organizations such as UNICEF and UNHCR for Monitoring and Evaluation, Case Tracking and Management, Clusters Management and Partners Coordination in more than 70 countries around the world. It offers a variety of functionalities allowing sophisticated database setup, offline or mobile data entry, advanced data analysis, reporting and the integration of other systems. During the event attendees will be introduced to the tool, learn how various information management scenarios can be managed with the use of ActivityInfo, and get familiar with the ActivityInfo API and its potential.

For more information visit:

Claudine Blokiau,
Lucy Brinks,
Jamie Whitehouse
Fay Candiliari

Stakeholder meeting for the joint project run by Global Rights Compliance and the World Peace Foundation (Invitation Only)
Time: 15.20 – 16.50
By Catriona Murdoch ( and Alex de Waal

Stakeholder meeting for the joint project run by Global Rights Compliance and the World Peace Foundation entitled Accountability for Mass Starvation: Testing the limits of the law. The Project will provide the factual and legal basis for ensuring awareness of starvation as an intentional and avoidable act, developing local, regional and international capacity to identify, avoid, prevent and seek accountability for starvation to provide for more positive humanitarian outcomes for millions of women, children and men. By invitation only.

Evening Event:

Conference Dinner at the Blue Lagoon
Time: 19:00 (walk in at 18.30)

After 2 long conference days we give you the opportunity to unwind with us at a beautiful beach restaurant in Scheveningen/The Hague. We hope to see you Tuesday evening to enjoy the ocean views, a drink, music, a barbecue and an amazing sunset together.  Ticket needed. 

29 August

Key Humanitarian Concepts in Historical Perspective
Time: 9.10 – 10.40 (Panel) – 11:00 – 12:30 (Round Table Debate)

Historical perspectives have increased in importance in the field of humanitarian studies. This panel, conducted in the form of a round-table discussion, will seek to critically examine several key concepts in the humanitarian field in historically and contextually-specific ways. Possibilities for discussion include resilience, rehabilitation, reconstruction, exhibition, memory, and mutual aid. The aim is to assess the usefulness of these and other key terms in understanding humanitarian practice across a range of periods and geographic contexts.

Questions for discussion include: To what extent are these key concepts rooted in the fundamental tension between self-reliance and dependency? How helpful are these concepts in understanding humanitarian crises in the deeper past? In the global South? To what extent do these key concepts engage with indigenous, as opposed to external, approaches to human need?

Coordinators of this panel are Pierre Fuller, Eleanor Davey, Bertrand Taithe, Laure Humbert, Andrew Newby, Steffen Werther, Norbert Gotz, Georgina Brewis, Antoine Burgard, Julia Irwin

Part 2 of the session will be chaired by Peter Heintze on The relevance of study and writing of Humanitarian History.
Humanitarian History: in the United Kingdom a strong academic section; in the Netherlands however almost non-existent. A debate to explore the relevance of humanitarian history:  What can we learn from humanitarian history? And how can it influence current humanitarian action?

Open Workshop –  Capacity Building from the Emergent Future: Co-Creating Leadership through Grassroots Initiatives
Time: 9:10 – 10:40

Cooperative and grassroots initiatives, as those at Zaatari camp, demonstrate how participatory leadership and resilience transform refugee communities. In this workshop we are inviting humanitarian workers,
researchers, and policy makers who work with refugee populations to
rethink how to strengthen dialogue and cooperation between international and local organizations. We are especially interested in exploring how technology, web-based spaces and mobile apps, can enable local humanitarian workers to make their voices heard. Our workshop draws upon the World Humanitarian Summit commitments to a) localize humanitarian research beyond traditional venues, b) support transdisciplinary research, and c) cooperate with non-traditional actors. The workshop title takes its inspiration from Otto Scharmer’s motto on “leading from the emergent future.” Scharmer’s organizational model suggests a shift from networking and monitoring to co-creative and participatory forms of leadership that take into account the well-being of the entire system. This eco-system approach requires empathic listening, experiential learning, transdisciplinary collaboration (engineers, planners, architects, geographers, policy makers, etc), and training in mindful and non-judgmental dialogue. Drawing upon the themes of the WHS we propose the following four pillars for building web- based spaces and physical spaces (seminars, summer schools) for transdisciplinary collaboration with grassroots initiatives.

  • Capacity building (energy, housing, agriculture)
  • Innovation in business and services
  • Innovation in cultural heritage and arts celebrating the spiritual and philosophical traditions of refugee communities.
  • Training in dialogic leadership and inter-personal intelligence

Key questions for discussion:

  • How can humanitarian workers develop a more dialogic awareness to encourage trust and interconnectedness on local and global levels?
  • What new knowledge and skills do humanitarian workers need as future leaders?
  • How could web-based platforms and mobile apps be used to promote spontaneous, informal exchanges and empower local actors who have little access to other platforms of representation?
  • How could physical meetings, such as summer schools or seminar facilitate the sustainability of web-based platforms of representation?

Coordinators of this workshop are Dr. Anastasia Nikolopoulou, Dean, School of Humanities, University of Cyprus; Dr. M. Satish Kumar, Director for Internationalization, Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, School of Natural and Built Environment, Queen’s University Belfast; and Dr. Ayoub Abu-Dayyeh, Philosophy of Science and Civil and Structural Engineering. Chartered Energy and Green Buildings Consultant; Vice President, Society of Strategic Energy Studies; Former President of Energy Conservation and Sustainable Environment Society, Amman, Jordan.

Fieldwork research in complex, remote and hazardous places: Guidelines launch and roundtable with the French Red Cross Foundation (Fondation Croix-Rouge)
Time: 11:00 – 12:30

This session will discuss the relevance and challenges of doing fieldwork research in complex, remote and hazardous places. Includes the launch of the French version of “Security Guidelines for field research” translated and prepared by the French Red Cross Foundation (Fondation Croix-Rouge), followed by a roundtable and Q&A session. The panellist are: Virginie Troit, Director, Fondation Croix-Rouge; Dorothea Hilhorst, Professor of humanitarian aid and reconstruction, ISS; and Vincent Léger, Research officer, Fondation Croix-Rouge. Chair and moderator: Rodrigo Mena, ISS.

How to Get your Work Published
Routledge Session by Helena Hurd
Time: 12.30 (during lunch)

This session aims to bust some of the myths around books and journals publishing in international development and humanitarian studies. It will cover the basic nuts and bolts, along with hints and tips, and with particular reference to international development and humanitarian topics. With plenty of opportunity for questions.

Helena Hurd is the Editor for Development Studies books at Routledge. She runs the world’s largest international development and humanitarian studies books programme, with responsibility for the IHSA book series, amongst several others.

Evening Event:

 Movie Night at Humanity House Barbara Harrell-Bond: a life not ordinary

 Director: Enrico Falzetti

Written by Katarzyna Grabska and Enrico Falzetti. Produced by Katarzyna Grabska in collaboration with AMERA Int. Documentary, 58 min.

Through the prism of an extraordinary life, this documentary explores the achievements of Barbara Harrell-Bond – academic, refugee activist and a life-long advocate of refugee rights. The film takes us on a personal journey of a not-so-ordinary woman born in a remote town in South Dakota during the Great Depression, and traces her career from her initial engagement with the civil rights in the late Fifties, to her move to the UK in the mid-Sixties where she studied social anthropology at the University of Oxford in the 1960s, and then to her travels in West Africa where she carried out much of her academic research. Her first-hand experience of the Saharawi refugee camps in Algeria in 1980, and the humanitarian crisis in Sudan in 1982, led her to establish the first refugee studies centre in Oxford, of which she is a founding director, and numerous others around the world. A very strong advocate of legal aid programs for refugees in the Global South, Barbara established a number of these programs including in Uganda, Egypt, South Africa and the UK.

Far from being only an academic, the focus of Barbara’s life-long work has been on refugee rights, and on keeping refugees at the centre of humanitarian interventions. Issues which resonate even more deeply now, in an age in which safe havens for refugees are increasingly being eroded and violations of human rights are on the rise.

 About Humanity House – Visit the Humanity House: A journey of discovery

In the Humanity House, you see, hear and experience personally what it must feel like to end up in a war of conflict situation. An intense experience journey puts you in the place of a refugee. After the journey, you (virtually) meet eight people to whom this really happened. Like Bruce Cerew (33) from Nigeria, who lived through the war in Liberia as a child soldier. And Lidija Zelovic (45) from the former Yugoslavia, who can still picture the face of the boy she loved until her father sent her away to escape the war. Akhrat Selevani (17) from Iraq describes what it was like to spend eight years living and waiting in various Dutch asylum seeker centres..

Between 25 August and 2 September you will receive a special discount at the museum, by showing your IHSA Conference Badge. IHSA-Entrance is only €2 (instead of €9,50)! Address: Prinsegracht 8, 2512 GA Den Haag.

Exhibition Area + Meet the Author

Next to the Atrium there is a small exhibition area with tables by Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute (HCRI), Routledge and the Manchester University Press. Feel free to stop by, browse, talk to the representatives or leave your own flyers and publications here for participants to have a look at.

During the coffee and lunch breaks on the 28th and 29th you are given the opportunity to have a conversation with Andrew Cunningham and talk about his new book ‘International Humanitarian NGOs and State Relations – Politics, Principles and Identity’. The book examines the often-discordant relationship between states and humanitarian INGOs against the backdrop of civil conflict. INGOs seeking to provide humanitarian assistance to populations suffering from the consequences of conflicts and other human-made disasters work amid politically sensitive local dynamics where states will often see civil society actors as threats. Drawing on first-hand experience as well as deep archival research, this book explores how the relationship works in practice and how clashing priorities can be mediated. Cases studies of Sri Lanka, Darfur, Ethiopia and Chechnya are investigated, building towards the elaboration of a ‘negotiation structure’ to help practitioners understand and hopefully improve the state-INGO relationship.’’