Humanitarian studies in turbulent times: taking stock of the Agenda for Humanity

Panel details

Panel organiser(s) will be presenting In-Person & Online
Number of paper presentations 4


To see when the panel starts and where to watch it scroll down or click here.
Organisers: Clara Egger (EUR), Kirstoffer Liden, Kristina Roepstorff (PRIO)

As we are approaching the 10th anniversary of the Agenda for Humanity, challenges to transnational solidarity and attacks on humanitarian values have never seemed so acute. The COVID-19 pandemic has served as «vulnerability multiplier» and raised unprecedented challenges for humanitarian operations. The rise of nationalistic and far-right parties and their coming to power in Brazil, Italy, Hungary or Sweden daily challenge the capacity to maintain humanitarian commitments, in particular towards migrant populations. Humanitarian norms are under siege in Ukraine, Yemen or Burkina Faso. The goal of “leaving no one behind” has evacuated debates on the use of the concept of vulnerabilities as a political tool to build hierarchies among those deserving of aid or not. Lastly, the aid localisation agenda has seen crisis-affected governments exercise a stronger grip on humanitarian activities, aligning aid with their priorities and closing civil society's independent space.

During the World Humanitarian Summit, academics, practitioners and policymakers jointly committed to move from words to action and jointly monitor progress in achieving core commitments. The aim of this panel is to take stock of existing research initiatives focusing on the Agenda for Humanity from a variety of methodological, theoretical and methodological standpoints. We welcome contributions addressing – but not limited to – the following questions

1. How do changes in international and domestic politics alter humanitarian commitments?
2. How is the Agenda for Humanity’s narrative used to further political agenda?
3. What are the implications of the Agenda’s core responsibilities on the power dynamics shaping the humanitarian field?
4. What is the state of affairs on the Agenda for Humanity’s core commitments?

Paper presentations

Power, language and localisation: Who defines “the local”?
Author(s): Alex Odlum, Swetha Ramachandran
What is humanitarian studies
Author(s): Dorothea Hilhorst

Date & Time

November 6th, 2023
11:00 (GMT +6)
Room SAC-620
Session has ended.

Register for the conference to view the livestream(s) when this panel is live.