The influx of hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants into Europe overwhelmed the capacities of responsible services in several European countries, resulting in multiple humanitarian and political crises. As a reaction international humanitarian standards, practices and funding were partially applied for the first time in Europe, while in many European countries domestic disaster management organizations carried out their largest operations ever by providing food, shelter and logistics. In some places, for instance Germany’s central reception centers (“Warteräume”) or in Greece, operations were carried out under the umbrella of international humanitarian aid (e.g., DG ECHO, UNHCR). With the Emergency Support Instrument (ESI) a new European instrument for civil protection and humanitarian aid came into play as a complement to existing EU-instruments. Thus, the overall political and humanitarian crisis became a trigger point for a still ongoing process of restructuring the European humanitarian aid and civil protection system.
Against this background the aim of this panel is
• to better understand the multi-sited interconnectedness of responses and actions on the different administrative, organizational and institutional levels,
• to analyze the implications for future European (and international) crisis situations and their management,
• to study the effects of these developments on humanitarian action and disaster management in general and
• to facilitate an exchange of knowledge in this emerging field.
This panel is hosted by: Daniel F. Lorenz & Cordula Dittmer, Disaster Research Unit (DRU), Berlin