Paper: Risk Dumping: Humanitarian Programming in Opposition-held Syria

Paper details

Paper authors Nadine Hassouneh
In panel on Everyday humanitarianism
Paper presenter(s) will be presenting In-Person / Online



Inaccessible conflict-ridden contexts necessitating humanitarian programming from afar are onerous operational landscapes, and although local staff and partners usually carry the burden of coordinating and implementing projects amidst such risk-laden environments, their encounters with safety and security risks are scantly heard and researched. By bringing everyday experiences with humanitarianism in conflict to the forefront, the paper investigates humanitarian action in practice, taking ‘western’-funded and led humanitarian projects in opposition-held Syria as a case. It interrogates remote humanitarian programming and the perils of the ethically teetering praxis of Duty of Care associated with it and empirically puts the problematic yet overlooked tradition of ‘Risk Dumping’ on the frontline. Sharing local voices from, and lived experiences in Syria and neighbouring countries including the author’s, the paper explores the frailty of safety and security measures for locals in the Syria response and exposes the blatant absence of ethical and financial accountability towards those actualising not only internationally led and funded projects, but internationally claimed ones.


Risk Dumping, Syrian Conflict, Remote Humanitarian Programming, Everyday Humanitarianism, Duty of Care, Humane Humanitarianism