Humanitarian Action

GPPi contributes research and advice on humanitarian action from a governance perspective. We support organizations in their quest to maintain the focus on people amidst expanding bureaucratic demands. We ask what it takes to adapt to insecurity while maintaining a principled approach. We accompany reform processes based on a sober analysis of their political economy. We try to understand the roles and interests of different actors involved in the humanitarian sector. Through various methods, we facilitate learning to help organizations improve on what they do and how they do it.

Evaluation report

Evaluation of WFP Policies on Humanitarian Principles and Access in Humanitarian Contexts

This report assesses how the World Food Programme applies the humanitarian principles and negotiates access, and offers recommendations for improvement.

By Julia Steets, Alexander Gaus, Claudia Meier, Janika Spannagel, Mark Bui, Adele Harmer, Abby Stoddard
Project report

Harmonizing Reporting Pilot: Mid-Term Review

In humanitarian action, the aim of the "8+3 template" is to make reporting to donors simpler, more efficient and less bureaucratic. Has it reached these goals? Alexander Gaus reviews the template at the mid-point of its pilot.


Full Accountability to Affected People Cannot Possibly Be Bad – Or Can It?

Full accountability to affected populations would demand a fundamental shift in the way the humanitarian sector functions, with important unintended effects: less power for humanitarian agencies and donors, changes in the humanitarian actor landscape, and effects on local power dynamics.

Evaluation of UNHCR’s Engagement in Humanitarian-Development Cooperation

GPPi and the International Security and Development Center are conducting a developmental, longitudinal strategy and impact evaluation of UNHCR's engagement in humanitarian-development cooperation. The evaluation will take stock of UNHCR’s current level of cooperation with development actors, assess the effects of this cooperation, and support UNHCR in refining its strategy as well as its operational approach to humanitarian-development cooperation.

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Mark Bui

Research Associate

Julian Lehmann

Project Manager

Janika Spannagel

Research Associate

Andrea Binder

Non-Resident Fellow

Susanna Krüger

Non-Resident Fellow

Elias Sagmeister

Non-Resident Fellow

Alexander Gaus

Project Manager

Claudia Meier

Associate Director

Julia Steets


András Derzsi-Horváth

Non-Resident Fellow

Urban Reichhold

Non-Resident Fellow

Nicole van Rooijen

Non-Resident Fellow

Funding & Contact

Our funders and clients include: the Cash Learning Partnership (CaLP), the Danish Refugee Council (DRC), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), the European Commission Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (DG ECHO), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the German Federal Foreign Office (AA), the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), Phineo, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA), the UK Department for International Development (DFID), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the World Food Programme (WFP).

For more information, please contact Julia Steets.

A Fresh Approach to Real-Time Reviews

To support timely course-correction and learning, GPPi proposes a new approach to real-time reviews. The approach envisages a pre-financed mechanism that enables review teams to deploy quickly and return periodically to the crisis context. Reviews focus on the big questions, communicate their findings immediately, and aim for high impact. The approach builds on our experience in conducting real-time reviews, for example in Greece, the Ukraine and Iraq for the Danish Refugee Council, in Haiti for the Inter-Agency Standing Committee, and in Yemen for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). It is timelier and lighter than earlier mechanisms and has a broader scope than operational peer reviews or assessments for a single organization.

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