Category Archives: Issue N°10 – March 2019

Collectif item is an eye-opener

Its rallying slogan, “So as not to stay with our eyes shut”, is a leitmotiv that resonates for humanitarian workers, development professionals and social workers and which justifies our turning the lens towards these revealers that are photographers.

Created in 2001, collectif item’s members now include 12 photographers, a video and sound director, a graphic designer and an anthropologist.  Read the article

“What have we lost along the way?”

Pierre Brunet • Écrivain et humanitaire

P. Brunet

This text by Pierre Brunet found its way into the humanitarian microcosm after its publication on the website Défis humanitaires. It is certainly no coincidence that it has generated so many positive, enthusiastic, and maybe even grateful reactions. Indeed, it powerfully coalesces the concerns, disappointments and perhaps disenchantments that the NGO world is experiencing. Pierre Brunet surely knew how to put into words the sometimes confused, untold or withheld feelings. May this text trigger a reflection about our own drive, and on what we refuse to become. Read the article

Innovating humanitarian practices through socio-anthropological research

Magali Bouchon • Socio-anthropologue, Médecins du Monde

M. Bouchon

The seminar, “Socio-anthropological research at Médecins du Monde: What use is it to act?” was held on 14 December 2018. This day was the opportunity to look back on the ten years of Médecins du Monde’s (MdM) socio-anthropological approach, and provide – with the input of researchers and academics – perspectives for fruitful collaboration between the world of research and that of humanitarian action.
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“The Kamaishi miracle”: lessons learned from the 2011 tsunami in Japan

Diane Alalouf-Hall • Doctorante en sociologie à l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM)

D. Alalouf-Hall

The tsunami that hit the east coast of Honshu Island in Japan in 2011 not only made Fukushima a martyr city, a universal symbol of the current nuclear risk. It also struck many agglomerations exposed to the deadly wave that came from the Pacific Ocean. Kamaishi was one of them. It was also the place of a “miracle” that drew on good will and education of younger generations. Read the article

Revisiting the Nexus: numbers, principles and the issue of social change

Gilles Carbonnier • ICRC vice-president and Professor of Economics at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (Geneva)

G. Carbonnier

Might the concept of social change enable us to work towards a better synergy between the current actors in the development-humanitarian aid-conflict prevention Nexus? This is the hypothesis of the economist Gilles Carbonnier, based on the flow of resources to recipient countries of humanitarian aid. Read the article

Humanitarianism at the heart of tomorrow’s urban challenges

Emmanuel Matteudi  • Professeur des universités en urbanisme, Université Aix-Marseille

E. Matteudi

The urban clinical picture is disquieting, but not hopeless. Emmanuel Matteudi, in his analysis of the world’s urban explosion, appropriately reminds us that humanitarianism, lying at the heart of the challenges facing tomorrow’s cities, will not be able to act alone.
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A development NGO faced with a major emergency in an urban environment

Renaud Colombier • Responsable de programmes développement urbain et habitat au Gret (ex-Groupe de recherche et d’échanges technologiques)

R. Colombier

Before being struck by an unforgettable earthquake, Port-au-Prince was a city. For this very reason it suffered so many deaths, injuries and devastations. The experience of GRET (former Group for Research and Technology Exchanges), as recounted here by Renaud Colombier, provides food for thought about the links that must be forged between development and emergency humanitarian aid actors. Read the article

A virtuous circle of collaboration for an efficient urban humanitarian response: Kampala

Louise Thaller  • Senior Programme Officer at IMPACT Initiatives

Innocent Silver  • Project Coordinator at the Kampala Capital City Authority

L. Thallier

I. Silver

As the country in Africa that receives the greatest number of refugees, Uganda has an open and inclusive migratory policy. The authorities of the capital, Kampala, have put in place an innovative and comprehensive project for the management of the needs of migrants and of the host population. The project, which brings together local and national authorities, international NGOs and local associations, benefited from the support of the think-tank IMPACT Initiatives. Read the article