In February 2021, Humanitarian Alternatives celebrates its fifth anniversary. From the lessons of the Ebola crisis to the pandemic we are facing today, from climate change to the generational evolution that is shaking up the aid sector, from the geopolitical transformations to the technological innovations that are transforming the way NGOs work: five years of analysis, debate and creative proposals. Through fifteen issues, some 200 articles and even more online content, this review has gradually established itself as the voice of humanitarian thinking with French-speaking roots but resolutely open to the world, at the heart of a new dialogue between fieldworkers and academic circles of the North and South. On the occasion of this anniversary, co-founder Jean-Christophe Rufin looks back on the creation of the review, humanitarian news in recent years, and the evolution of the aid community.
An interview conducted by Boris Martin, editor-in-chief of the review, to be discovered above.
In accordance with the statutes, the administration of the association is collegial. The Board of Directors is composed of the founding members and co-opted members. In 2019, the Board of Directors co-opted Maria Rubio, former Financial Director of Handicap International, who now assists us in the financial analysis of the association, and Philippe Ryfman, professor and lawyer at the Paris Bar, specialist in association and foundation law, who joined the Board of Directors as a referent for the Forum Espace Humanitaire, which Humanitarian Alternatives now manages.
The Board of Directors is statutorily independent of the funding bodies of the journal, but bases its decisions on the opinions of the Steering Committee, which functions as an enlarged board of directors. The Steering Committee is consulted on the journal's editorial line and its evolution, as well as the strategy for financing, communication, development and diversification of the association's activities around the journal.
The Steering Committee is composed of :
Members of the Board: Jean-François MATTEI, Benoît MIRIBEL, Jean-Baptiste RICHARDIER, Jean-Christophe RUFIN, Bernard MICHEL, Maria RUBIO, Philippe RYFMAN;
Representatives of the financial partners : Jean-Pierre BOSSER (Fondation Mérieux), Francis COMTE (OVE Foundation), Emanuela CROCE (Care-France), Romain DE VRIES (Secours Catholique), Luc LAMPRIÈRE (Institut HI pour l'Action Humanitaire), Karine MEAUX (Fondation de France), Pascal REVAULT (Action Against Hunger Foundation), Bénédicte SCHUTZ (Princely Government of Monaco/Directorate for International Cooperation), Virginie TROIT (French Red Cross Foundation), Joël WEILER (Médecin du Monde Foundation);
Co-opted members: Francis CHARHON, Yvan CONOIR, Bruno-Georges DAVID.
Since 23 September 2019, Jean-Pierre Bosser has been the Director General of the Mérieux Foundation that specializes in its fight against infectious diseases by strengthening local capacities in developing countries. The Foundation acts to facilitate access to diagnosis of the highest quality, which is essential to any prevention and surveillance policy, and to assure better patient care, which is especially vital for the health of those who are the most vulnerable, such as mothers and children.
Prior to this, he had been General and Chief of Staff of the Army (CEMAT) since September 1, 2014. Upon reaching the age limit for his rank, he retired on July 31, 2019.
Born on November 14, 1959, in Versailles, and, after having completed his full education at the St. Cyr military academy as a member of the "General Lasalle" class (1979-1981), he then pursued applicable training at the School of Infantry in Montpellier.
During his military career, before being promoted to CEMAT, he held several executive positions:
-Director of Defense Protection and Security in Paris (2012-2014)
- Assistant to the Deputy Chief of Staff of human resources at Army headquarters (2007-2008)
- Director of the Saint-Cyr Coëtquidan schools (2003 to 2005)
- Head of the Military Personnel Directorate of the Army (between 1996 and 2007)
- Head of the operational center of the Joint Staff of the High Command of the Armed Forces in New Caledonia (1990-1992)
- He also served in the 8th Marine Infantry Parachute Regiment in Castres on three occasions: as Section Head (1982 to 1985), as Deputy Officer and Company Commander (1986 and 1990), and lastly, after being appointed Colonel on October 1, 2000, as Corps Commander (2001 to 2003).
In addition, between 1982 and 2003, he was regularly assigned to field operations with multinational security forces in Lebanon and during French relief operations, these being Operation Manta and Epervier in Chad, the evacuation of nationals from Gabon, operation Trident in Kosovo as the Head of his regiment, and Operation Boali in the Central African Republic, where he was also head of his regiment. In 1985, he led a technical military relief operation in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania.
Cited for merit, General Jean-Pierre Bosser is a Grand Officer of the Legion of Honor, Commander of the National Order of Merit, US Commander of the Legion of Merit, and Knight of National Merit in Mauritania. He has also been awarded the Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit from the Federal Republic of Germany, the 1st Class National Defense Medal from Portugal, and the First-Class Military Order from the United Arab Emirates.
Chairs the Task Force on Emergency and Post-Crisis that brings together leading French NGOs. Was former President, then CEO of MSF, and former Director General of Fondation de France. Currently manages FCHconseil, which supports associations and foundations in the implementation of their strategic plan, and their leaders in the growth and management of their organizations. Publications: Long Live Philanthropy, Social Engagement for Dummies.
Yvan Conoir, MBA, MA, is Researcher for the Chair Raoul Dandurand in Strategic and Diplomatic Studies of the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM) and teaches at the Master in International Development and Humanitarian Action of University Laval (Quebec).
He started his humanitarian career with the United Nations, later for Canadian institutions, more than 30 years ago. He now works as international consultant for the World Bank, the UN (UNHCR, OCHA, UNICEF, UNDP, UNESCO, UN DPKO, UNV), the EU, CIDA, OAS, French, Canadian and Swiss Ministries of International Cooperation and other private entities.
He is the author of various publications "L'action humanitaire du Canada" (PUL-2002), "Faire la paix - concepts et pratiques de la consolidation de la paix" (PUL-2005) and "DDR – Désarmer, démobiliser et réintégrer – Défis humains, Enjeux globaux" (PUL-2006). His latest book which just got released at the Presses de l'Université Laval: "Gestion de projets de développement international et de développement humanitaire" (2016).
Bruno-Georges David is President and founder of Communication Sans Frontières, creator of the Grand Prix de Communication Solidaire and the Observatoire de Communication Solidaire (OCS). He organizes annual meetings on the topic of public interest communication.
He is Director of Communications and Development at the humanitarian NGO Secours Islamique France, and formerly held this position, at the NGO Action Contre la Faim (ACF-France). He been a member of the Board of Directors of the Comité de la Charte and of Don en Confiance, and a member of the Trade Council of France Générosité.
Bruno-Georges David is in charge of Communications at the Department of Social and Solidarity Economy at l’Ecole des Métiers et de l’Information (EMI) and teaches at the University Paris-Est-Créteil (UPEC-PARIS XII) in the Master’s program of Public Policies through Action Humanitaire International and the Magistère de Communication CELSA - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences de l'Information et de la Communication Paris-Sorbonne. He is a member of the Steering Committee of the review journal Humanitarian Alternatives, and a member of the Development Committee of the Institut Supérieur d'Economie et de Gestion (ISEG).
Bruno-Georges is co-founder of the humanitarian NGO Noir&Blanc and has been Vice-President of Logistique Médicale Humanitaire, and President and co-founder of the association Un Fauteuil à la Mer.
He has carried out work in communications with groundbreaking agencies, such as Roux-Séguéla-Cayzac et Goudard (RSCG) and Publicis. With the latter agency, he was in charge of launching marketing campaigns throughout Eastern and Western Europe for various trademarks, such as Coca-Cola, where he led operations in Russia, and L'Oréal. In the USA and India he planned the launch of many other products as well. He then joined the McCann-Erickson group where he developed one of the world's first pioneering communication alternatives on the web. He also founded two consulting agencies in marketing and communication strategy, and then joined the TBWA group as Associate Director to specifically develop the merger between non-profit brands and commercial trademarks through partnerships between multinationals and NGOs.
Bruno-Georges has worked with many companies (Coca-Cola, Nestlé, L'Oréal, Renault, etc.) and with international NGOs, where he has gained valuable expertise in marketing and communications in the business and non-profit sectors both in France and abroad.
He is a graduate of the Diplomatic and Strategic Studies Center − Advanced International Relations, at the Institute for International Management in Wolfesse, The Netherlands, and of the FCB Advanced Advertising Program in Chicago, USA.
Romain de Vries. Head of International Emergencies at Secours Catholique - Caritas France, after several years in operations at the ICRC in Afghanistan, West Bank and Democratic Republic of Congo. Has also worked in various private sectors in Côte d'Ivoire, Colombia, Malaysia...
Karine Meaux is an International aid & Emergencies program manager at the Fondation de France since September 2017. She initiates and coordinates the Fondation’s responses to the major emergencies, such as the Nepalese earthquake of 2015 and the Caribbean typhoons of 2017. She also contributes to various discussions on humanitarian issues. This job also includes a collaboration with the French NGO, CFSI, to promote the family farming in West Africa (Pafao), as well as a partnership with other foundations (Italian and American) to support the farmers’ organizations in the same area.
Previously, Karine practiced several positions in the national coordination of French NGOs, Coordination SUD, where she specifically tried to promote an enabling environment and better working conditions for every kind of international solidarity associations. Her education in humanitarian law, history and languages led her initially, from 2000, to work in different continents within the Caritas network. At the headquarter, as an Asia/Oceania project officer, a Tsunami coordinator and an international action/quality coordinator. On the field, on long term missions, in Kosovo (2000-2001), Sri Lanka (2006-2007) and Chad (2008-2009), mainly in post-emergency contexts, supporting local partners to face the challenges of camp management and local civil society strengthening.
Benoît Miribel has been President of the Centre Français des Fonds et Fondations (CFF) since June 2015. He is the General Secretary of the foundation "Sustainable Health for All".
He was the Public Health Director at the Mérieux Institute from April 2019 to June 2020. Prior to that he was for 12 years (2007-2018) the Director General at La Fondation Mérieux, an organization dedicated to the fight against infectious diseases mainly in developing countries. He has also been the Honorary Chairman of Action against Hunger (ACF) since June 2013, an association that he chaired from 2010 to 2013 and managed from 2003 to 2006.
Benoît Miribel is also President of Bioport, a humanitarian logistics platform in Lyon, since June 2015. He is co-founder of the Forum Espace Humanitaire (FEH), of the bilingual journal, Humanitarian Alternatives, and a co-founding member of the association, Friendship France, which operates in Bangladesh. He is a member of the think tank “Santé Mondiale 2030” and the tink tank “Re(Sources)”.
In 2010, he co-authored with Alain Boinet a report commissioned by the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs (B. Kouchner) on the development of humanitarian action and its challenges.
He is a member of the Conseil Supérieur de l'Economie Sociale et Solidaire (CSESS) and has served on the High Council for International Cooperation (HCCI) and the National Consultative Commission for Human Rights (CNCDH).
Head of the Expertise and Advocacy department at ACF-France. A doctor by training, and a lecturer in social sciences at Paris 1 (IEDES), he joined ACF in August 2018, having previously worked for 10 years as the head of operations for the Committee for Exiles’ Health at Bicêtre hospital in France. Before that, and since 1991, he has worked on providing access to medicines and collaboration between healthcare providers in the context of the AIDS epidemic (Ensemble pour une solidarité thérapeutique hospitalière en réseau - ESTHER), universal health coverage and the development of carer-patient relationships, issues of environmental health (Research Group for Rural Development) and the protection of refugees and asylum-seekers (FNUAP-OMS).
Her commitment in the social non-profit sector began in Chile with the CONIN Foundation, which works in favour of child nutrition in disadvantaged and precarious sectors.
Some time after her arrival in France as a political refugee and settling in Lyon, it was quite natural for her to become involved alongside the founders of Handicap International, as head of accounting and financial management and then Director of Finance. Maria will work for Handicap International for 30 years until her retirement in 2017.
Holder in Chile of diplomas in Accountancy and Commercial Engineering, completed by a Master’s Degree in Economics and a DESS in Management Information Technology in France, she has put her skills and motivation to work in humanitarian action for the benefit of the most disadvantaged.
Her long experience in this sector has enabled her to understand the challenges and constraints of financial management of international solidarity organisations, a management that is torn between the search for efficiency demanded by funders and supervisory bodies, and on the other hand, action in the field at the service of the most underprivileged in countries below the poverty line and often in unstable contexts.
Jean-Christophe Rufin, born in Bourges on June 28, 1952, is a physician, a writer, and a French diplomat.
In 2008, he was elected to the Académie française as its youngest member. He has authored a number of books, including:
Essays on humanitarianism and the developing world,
Historical novels (Rouge Brésil, L'Abyssin) and contemporary novels (Les Causes Perdues, Katiba) that deal with the meeting of civilizations and the issues of solidarity, terrorism, etc.
He is former president of Action contre la Faim (ACF), and was French Ambassador to Senegal and Gambia.
Career in humanitarianism
In his role as a physician, he pioneered the creation of the humanitarian NGO, Médecins sans Frontières. At MSF, he led several humanitarian missions in East Africa, his first being in Eritrea in 1976 when it was then ravaged by war, and later in Latin America.
In 1985, Jean-Christophe Rufin became the Medical Director of ACF in Ethiopia.
Between 1991 and 1993 he was Vice-President of Médecins sans Frontières, and then left the organization at the time of the March for Cambodia.
Between 1994 and 1996, he was Administrator for the French Red Cross.
In 1999, he was stationed in Kosovo as an administrator of the association, Première Urgence, and led a seminar at the War College called, "The UN and Peacekeeping”.
From 2002 onwards, he was President of ACF, and then resigned in June 2006 to devote more time to writing. He retains the title of Honorary President of this NGO.
Career in government ministries and diplomatic service
After graduating from the Institute of Political Studies in Paris in 1980, he was appointed, as advisor to Claude Malhuret, the Secretary of State for Human Rights from 1986 to 1988.
From 1989 to 1990, he was an expatriate in Brazil working at the French embassy as the attaché for culture and cooperation.
In 1993, he joined the office of François Léotard, Minister of Defense, as a special advisor in strategic planning on North-South relations, and held that position for two years.
As Research Director at the Institute of International and Strategic Relations between 1996 and 1999, he led the French humanitarian mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina. His work led to the release of eleven French hostages from the association Première Urgence who were detained by Bosnian Serbs. In 1995, he left the Ministry of Defense and was appointed cultural attaché in the Northeast of Brazil.
On August 3, 2007, he was appointed French ambassador to Senegal and Gambia. He retired from this position on June 30, 2010.
Philippe Ryfman – Honorary professor and researcher associate, PARIS-I, University ; Researcher on non-governmental and humanitarian issues ;
Attorney registered at the Paris Bar (Law Firm Cabinet Ryfman, Avocats). Cofounder of the Forum Espace Humanitaire and coordinator of the 2019 edition
Philippe Ryfman (PhD in Political Science, and Law degree holder) is an honorary professor and researcher associate at the Political Science Department and at the European Center for Sociology and Political Science (CESSP-Sorbonne), Université Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne. He has led the Master’s program, “International Cooperation, Humanitarian Action, and Development” (CIAHPD), of this academic institution. He is presently conducting research on non-governmental and humanitarian issues. For instance as associate researcher with the Canadian Research Observatory on Humanitarian Crisis and Aid (OCCAH) at UQAM, Montreal.
He has taught graduate and post-graduate courses on international humanitarian law and on the main issues affecting international NGOs, humanitarian action, and international careers at Université Paris I and at various french (Evry, INALCO, IEP, etc.) and foreign (Geneva, Fribourg, Abidjan, etc.) universities. He has also conducted continuous training sessions and has led series of conferences for research centers, private academic institutions, government agencies, companies, non-profit organizations and foundations. He has lectured at university symposiums and public gatherings, in France and abroad, and has taken part in various roundtables on a number of research topics.
One of his recent books, A History of Humanitarian Action, first appeared in September 2008, in the “Repères” series (No. 522) published by Editions La Découverte, for which he was awarded the 2009 Palais Littéraire Prize. The second edition (expanded, updated, and fully revised) was published in July 2016. The third edition (also expanded, updated, and fully revised) of an other book – always in the “Repères” series (No. 386) – titled NGOs, was released in autumn 2014. He has contributed to various French and English-language collective works, and has written numerous articles for journals. Among his recent publications can be quoted “Crisis of Maturity and Transformation in French NGOs” that appeared in Karl Blanchet’s and Boris Martin’s, Many Reasons to Intervene: French and British Approaches to Humanitarian Action, Hurst and Columbia University Press, London and New York, 2011. He is the author of the articles, “Humanitarian non-governmental agencies: Pivotal role in humanitarian aid questioned” that appeared in the july-august 2012 issue (No. 56) of Questions internationales, and “French humanitarian and developmental NGOs: another “French exception” in Europe?” that appeared in Revue Mondes en Développement, 2013/1 (No. 161). In 2013, he also authored the chapter called, “The impact of NGOs on the international scene” for Les Notices de la Documentation Française(dedicated to International Relations). He was also the contributor of “New Frontiers of Humanitarian Action: Deadlock in Syria” in No. 34 issue (March 2013) of the Revue Humanitaire, as well as the article, “The stalemate by the camp of the refugee phenomenon” that appeared in the magazine Exils et Migrations ibériques, in November 2015. Or (2017), he wrote the article "The role of NGOs : pioneer, stabilizer or troublemaker?" into the special feature The new international disorder,in the may-august 2017 issue (nos85/86) of Questions internationales. Two other anthologies to which he contributed were released in may and july 2016 : one called, World Heath: Strategic risks, diplomatic games, by Presses de Sciences Po, and the other, Beneficiaries of humanitarian action: crossroads and crossed disciplines, published by Presses de la Sorbonne Nouvelle. While in 2018, he signed in - Droit et Stratégies de l'Action Humanitaire, Editions MARE and MARTIN - a paper entitled «Outline for a sociology of humanitarian actors». Finally, in October 2019, another collective work will be published. Entitled Law and Practice of HumanitarianAction, this volume that he co-edited with Sandra SZUREK and Marina EUDES is published by LGDJ/Groupe LEXTENSO. By its size (nearly a thousand pages) the amount and quality of the authors (it brings together 87 from various countries, French and non-French), it will constitute a “première” in the French-speaking edition on the topic.
Former member of the Editorial Board of the journal, Revue Humanitaire, and current of the Scientific Board of Questions Internationales, he has held other positions, of which one as an editorialist for the column “Civil Society” of the newspaper Le Monde(Economic section), between 2005 and 2008. He regularly publishes papers and voices his opinion in media paper and on line (such as Le Monde, Libération, La Croixor the online french edition of The Huffington Post and The Conversation-France, among others), and makes regular appearances on the air (France Culture, RFI, RCF, Radio Suisse Romande, Radio Vatican, France 24, TV5 Monde, France Info...). He regularly writes books reviews for Humanitarian Alternatives, a bilingual English and French/ journal.
As an expert and consultant for non-governmental and inter-governmental institutions, he has also assessed various programs run by NGOs or Foundations and carried out fact-finding missions. A such, he plays – for instance – a part in 2016 to a report carried out by EY-France on the assessment of CSOs input in French national overseas development aid and international solidarity policy.
He practices also as an attorney registered at the Paris Bar (at the firm Cabinet Ryfman), where he specializes in NGOs and Foundations law. He advises several non-profit organizations and their leadership. He works too in the field of inheritance law.
As part of his personal commitment to international solidarity and humanitarian causes, he belonged (between 2005 and 2008) to the Emergency and Post-crisis Commission of the former French High Council for International Cooperation (HCCI), which – following its dissolution – was replaced, in 2009, by from civil society association called GRUPC (the Emergency and Post-Crisis Think Tank), of which he is a founding member, and was co-chairperson from 2015 to 2017. In 2011, he participated in the Working Group (WG) that planned – jointly with NGOs, the French Red Cross, and the government administration – the first National Humanitarian Conference that convened in November 2011. Subsequent to this event, in the first quarter of 2012, he took part in the WG that collaborated with the Crisis Center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the development of France’s Humanitarian Strategy first version.
For nine years, until June 2013, he was a member of the Board of the French branch of the NGO, Action Contre la Faim (Action Against Hunger) of whom he was a time Vice-President (2005, 2006). He now stands on its Strategic Analysis Committee. Between 2008 and 2014, he was member of the International Solidarity Committee of Foundation of France, whose independent experts review applications for co-funding. From 2013 to 2018, he was a member of this Foundation’s Post-Haiyan Typhoon Steering Committee for the Philippines. He also belongs to the Committee of Ethics and Good Practices of the NGO Electriciens sans Frontières (ESF). Since early 2012, he has chaired and led the Sponsorship Committee/Project Committee of the Endowment Fund of the Paris Bar. At the same time, he is a Board member of the French branch of the UN Women Organization, and of the French Red Cross Foundation. Together with the CEO of Fondation Mérieux, and the Honorary President of the French Red Cross, he also co-founded the Forum Espace Humanitaire (FEH) (Humanitarian Space Forum) in 2009, who gathers every 18 months in Annecy (France) the top leaders of the main French humanitarian organizations (NGO, Red Cross and Foundations) with their privileged private and public partners (national, european and international).
He continues to co-pilot the Steering Committee of this Forum with the Director of Public Health of the Institut Mérieux, the Director of Advocacy and Institutional Relations of Humanity and Inclusion (HI) and the Director General of the French Red Cross Foundation.The 8th edition of the FEH (of which he is the Coordinator) will take place - always in Annecy - in October 2019. On that occasion, the Forum will commemorate its 10th anniversary.
He has prepared, alongside various expert groups, the forward – looking scenarios that may play out on humanitarian aid and also in civil society in terms of its role and position regarding the nearly future (2025/2030). Between March and September 2015, he was a member of the Working Group (WG) mandated by the Board of Coordination SUD [French national NGOs Coordination] to provide a forecast that would allow the French NGOs community to come up with a strategic plan for the next six years. This WG is in process of transformation in a structure intended– from Spring 2018 – to implement a forward – looking and strategic monitoring mission.
Since 2018, he belongs to the NGO LAB, structure ensuring within C-SUD a permanent mission of prospective and strategic monitoring on the priority issues for the NGO community producing perspectives and providing decryption spaces.The LAB – referred for this purpose by the Board of Directors of C-SUD – drives studies commissioned to outside consultants.The first on The Relocation Aidwill be released in autumn 2019.
Its current research areas concern on the one hand the « Anti Civil Society Organizations Counter-Revolution »(AACR, or CRAA in french), on which he published in June 2017 a paper headlined "Countering the Anti Civil Society Organizations Counter-Revolution, an international policy target", on The Conversation-Francewebsite. A book on the topic is in project. On the other hand, the impact of robotization, automation and digital technology on the professional practices and cultures of international aid, especially within the NGO community. Finally, he is working on the issue of sexual abuse and the impact of the Me-Toomovement on the paid staff of aid organisations.As well as on the impact on the NGO community of counter-terrorism legislation and regulations, implemented by many countries and International Institutions.
Bénédicte SCHUTZ joined the Department of International Cooperation of Monaco in 2007 at the time it was founded, and she was later appointed its Director in April 2013.
Before joining the Monegasque Cooperation bureau of the Office of Foreign Relations, Bénédicte SCHUTZ worked for many years as a volunteer with social institutions and with several international NGOs (Handicap International 1998-1999, Fondation d'Auteuil 1999-2002).
From 2002 to 2004, she lived in Mali, where she worked for the French Embassy as Head of the Social Fund for Development with the Office of Cooperation and Cultural Action.
At the end of 2004, Bénédicte SCHUTZ joined the administrative services of Monaco as the Monaco Delegate to the International Organization of La Francophonie, before being appointed Program Manager in 2007 at the Department of International Cooperation.
Bénédicte SCHUTZ, graduated in Law in 1993 and went on to earn an MA in Political Science at Paris II Assas University and a DESS in International Humanitarian Aid through the NOHA network of the European Union.
Virginie has been involved in developmental aid and humanitarianism since her first professional experience with a local NGO in India. After eight years of managing international projects in biotechnology in the private sector in Germany, she shifted her focus towards the humanitarian sector as a volunteer activist for human rights with NGOs and social service organizations.
In 2004, she was put in charge of developing "business" partnerships with bureaus of the Handicap International (HI) network. In 2007, she joined the regional platform of Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, where she headed the fundraising and partnerships department. Upon her return to France in 2011, she resumed her studies in political science. Her research on "image and international aid" led her to accept an assignment with the French Development Agency lasting several months. In 2013, with Jean-François Mattei, she helped in the creation and development of the French Red Cross Fund as General Delegate. Virginie has been appointed Director of the French Red Cross Foundation for humanitarian and social research for 2018.
Virginie holds a Master's degree in management from ESC Toulouse, a Master's degree in political science from Panthéon-Sorbonne, and a degree in ethics from the Faculty of Medicine of Aix-Marseille University. She is a researcher and administrator of Handicap International France and a member of the Steering Council of the review journalHumanitarian Alternatives.
Joël Weiler began working in the humanitarian sector in 1992. After graduating from Bioforce, he joined various NGOs, such as Enfants du Monde-Human Rights (EMDH) and Santé Mali Rhône-Alpes (SMARA), as Head of mission in the Darfur, Vietnam, Mali, Burkina Faso, South Sudan, and Madagascar.
After this experience in development and emergency programs, his career with Médecins du Monde began in November 2010 when he joined the association as General Coordinator. He held this a position for three years, during which he covered emergencies in Syria, Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, and Zimbabwe.
Upon his return to France at the end of 2013, he assumed the position of Crisis Manager and then Deputy Director of International Operations. He has been the Director General of the association since April 1, 2017.
The members of the Scientific Council ensure a posteriori monitoring of the editorial choices of each of the three issues and are called upon to feed the evolution of the journal. In particular, the Board appreciates the work provided by the journal with regard to the origin and quality of the articles by researchers and practitioners. Its analyses are forwarded to the Steering council and the Editorial Board. At the end of the third issue of the year, a formal assessment of the editorial work for the past year is made during a tele- or videoconference discussion.
The Scientific Council is made up of individuals – researchers and/or teachers – appointed by the partner universities and institutes. At the end of the two-year term of office, the partner institution is invited to renew its representative or to appoint a new representative.
The members of the Scientific Council may be asked by the Chief Editor to evaluate an article falling within their competence or to identify an expert within their teams. In the same way, they are invited to identify and suggest potential authors as well as to disseminate calls for contributions within their network. They may also suggest personal contributions; however, these will be considered in accordance with the usual selection criteria and procedures.
The Scientific Council is composed of:
François AUDET (OCCAH) • Karl BLANCHET (Geneva Centre of Humanitarian Studies) • Sophie BRIÈRE & Stéphanie MALTAIS (Université Laval – Québec) • Gilles COLLARD (Bioforce) • Yvan CONOIR (UQAM – Montréal/Chaire Raoul Dandurand) • Aimé Kouassi MALANHOUA (Université Félix Houphouët Boigny/Chaire Unesco pour la culture de la paix Abidjan) • Houwayda Matta BOU RAMIA (Université Saint Joseph/École Libanaise de Formation Sociale – ELFS, Beyrouth) • Dana POPESCU-JOURDY (Université de Lyon/ Université Lumière Lyon II) • Gautier PIROTTE (Université de Liège) • Nathalie RUBIO (UniversitéAix-Marseille/Centre d’Études et de Recherches Internationales et Communautaires – CERIC) • Frédéric MEUNIER & Jean-Pierre VEYRENCHE/ (École Supérieure de Commerce et Développement 3A).
Humanitarian Alternatives is a fundamentally collective adventure, since the review was co-founded by Jean-François Mattei, Benoît Miribel, Jean-Baptiste Richardier and Jean-Christophe Rufin, before involving other partners in its wake.
The seeds of the initiative were first sown in September 2013, during the fourth Forum Espace Humanitaire (FEH) organised at Pensières in Veyrier-du-Lac, during the course of which it was admitted that the voice of francophone humanitarian organisations was becoming increasingly less audible in international debates. How, then, to contribute to debates on humanitarian issues in a format which would be accessible to everyone, in English and in French? How to develop analysis and reflections between humanitarian and research actors, to be able to offer alternative methods of humanitarian intervention?
In order to validate the relevance of such a project, a census carried out by the Red Cross Fund under the supervision of Professor Jean-François Mateit enabled us to identify the different existing publications on international humanitarian action. As a result of this analysis, Benoît Miribel suggested a collective approach in order to bring together the capacities of different foundations which were interested in this issue. He organised a first meeting in March 2014 in Paris, to gauge the interest in launching a bilingual review to create a link between field and academic actors, to contribute to the development of a systemic approach to humanitarian action. Jean-Christophe Rufin lent his support to the initiative from the very first meeting, and Jean-Baptiste Richardier was able to involve the Fondation Handicap International soon afterwards. A working group was progressively put in place and two years later, in February 2016, the Humanitarian Alternatives review published its first issue on the humanitarian consequences of the Ebola health crisis.
The review, which benefited from the experience of Boris Martin as editor-in-chief since its beginnings, also boasts an editorial board that is independent from the governing bodies. Its director of publication is Bernard Michel, and Audrey Sala ensures the coordination with the different involved parties. The review also has an Advisory Committee, a Scientific Board and a Board of Partners.
Launched firstly by the Mérieux Foundation, the French Red Cross Foundation, the Fondation Handicap International (now Institut HI pour l’Action Humanitaire) and the Action Contre la Faim Foundation, Humanitarian Alternatives currently enjoys the support of a dozen foundations, who contribute to the annual funding sum of 15 000 euros ( la Fondation Action Contre la Faim • la Fondation Bullukian • la Fondation de Recherche Caritas • la Fondation Croix-Rouge française • la Fondation de France • HI Institute for Humanitarian Action • la Fondation Mérieux • la Fondation Roi Baudouin • La Fondation OVE • le Gouvernement princier de Monaco/ Direction de la coopération internationale).
Keen to strengthen the links between research and humanitarian action, a number of universities, training centres, and research institutions regularly join the review in order to expand its network and contribute to the joint advance of knowledge, reflection and action.
Boris Martin is Chief editor of the Alternatives Humanitaires review (https://alternatives-humanitaires.org) since February 2016, after having occupied a similar position for the review Humanitaire at Médecins du Monde. He is also freelance editor and author.
La belle histoire, Médecins du Monde 1980-2020, Editions Médecins du Monde, 2020
L’adieu à l’humanitaire. Les ONG au défi de l’offensive néolibérale, Éditions Charles Léopold Mayer, 2015 (freely downloadable)
Many Reasons to Intervene: French and British Approaches to Humanitarian Action (with Karl Blanchet, eds.), Columbia University Press/Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd, 2011
Droits de l’Homme et responsabilités (with Sandrine Revet and Bertrand Verfaillie), Éditions Charles Léopold Mayer et Tarik Éditions, 2007, 139 pages.
Critique de la raison humanitaire (with Karl Blanchet), Editions Le Cavalier Bleu, 2006
Voyager autrement - Vers un tourisme responsable et solidaire, Editions Charles Léopold Mayer, 2003
Quand le droit fait l’école buissonnière - Pratiques populaires de droit (with Patricia Huyghebaert), Descartes & Cie, Editions Charles Léopold Mayer, 2002
After participating in the creation of the Handicap International Foundation and the Vivre Debout Foundation, Audrey Sala has accompanied the founders of the Humanitarian Alternatives review (https://alternatives-humanitaires.org) from the beginning of the project. She is now in charge of the coordination and the communication of the NGO.
Directed and led by Boris MARTIN, Editor-in-chief, the Editorial Board's mission is to discuss, conceive and define the "Focus" theme; to feed the various sections besides the "Focus" and to propose, prospect and contact, if necessary, the prospective authors. It ensures that the authors respect the editorial line as defined in the "Humanitarian Alternatives Charter".
The Editorial Board is composed of:
After a post-doctoral fellowship in Senegal with IRL 3189 Environment, Health, Societies on children's growth and its relationship with the environment, she has been working as a Research Specialist at Humanity & Inclusion for almost ten years. Aude has extensive experience in implementing research and studies in low- and middle-income countries and has learned to adapt her language and posture to diverse topics, contexts and audiences. She shares advice on methods and ethical issues with a variety of stakeholders at headquarters and in the field (operational, technical, partners) and is actively involved in the development of learning materials on how to plan and implement studies. She also facilitates the development of research projects in partnership with academic institutes, translating the expectations and constraints of both worlds (development and academic) into reality.
Clara Egger holds an MA degree in Political Science (2010) from Sciences Po Grenoble (MA Program “International Organizations IGO – NGOs”) and a PhD in political science from the University Grenoble Alpes. Her PhD thesis analyses States’ control strategies of humanitarian NGOs at the unilateral and multilateral level, focusing on the cases of France, United Kingdom and the United States of America. During her PhD, she did field research in Kosovo and Kenya. Her research was awarded the French Red Cross Fund for the best research on humanitarian action and was shortlisted for the ECPR Jean Blondel PhD Prize for the best thesis in politics. She leaded the research aspects of the Humanitarian Encyclopedia project aiming to analyse how key concepts to humanitarian practice are used, understood and perceived. She is now assistant professor at the University of Groningen. Her current research interests include the role of humanitarian action in international politics and, in particular, its links with military intervention; non-Western conception of humanitarianism and armed contestation of Western powers foreign policies
Director of the H.I Impact, Information & Innovation division. Pierre is agronomist but was keen to enrich his curriculum with complementary training in management (IAE), epidemiology (CESAM) and strategic foresight (CNAM). During his 25-years experience in the humanitarian field, he held many technical (technical coordinator, Head of Knowledge Management division) and operational (geographical manager, mission director) positions for Action Against Hunger, Solidarités International and Humanity & Inclusion. This eclectic experience in humanitarian action has allowed him to better understand the specific constraints of the different positions, but also to underline the importance of cross-sectoral approaches.
Valerie Gorin is a lecturer and researcher since 2011 at the Geneva Centre of Humanitarian Studies, a joint centre of the University of Geneva and the Graduate Institute. Since 2020, she is Head of Learning for the Executive Master programme in humanitarian action. She earned her MA in History in 2004, and her PhD in communication and media sciences at the University of Geneva in 2013. Her doctoral thesis focused on the photojournalistic coverage of humanitarian crises in American and French news magazines from the 1960s to the 1990s. She has since carried out research on the history of aid and humanitarian communication, with a specific focus on the visual culture of aid organisations and advocacy strategies. She also co-edited several publications about the responses to famine (European Review of History, 2015), the representations of the 2014-2016 migration crisis (Journal of Applied Journalism and Media Studies, 2018), as well as the link between emotions and images in humanitarian settings (Palgrave Macmillan, 2021 – to be published).
Vincent Leger is a research officer at the French Red Cross Foundation. PhD in anthropology (University College London) and holder of a Master in demography (IDUP), he is responsible for monitoring and promoting research supported by the Foundation on humanitarian and social action.
Editor-in-chief of Humanitarian Alternatives, he manages and leads its editorial board. After studying law and legal anthropology, Boris Martin became involved in academic research, writing and humanitarian action. He was editor-in-chief of the review Humanitaire at Médecins du Monde from 2000 to 2015. He has published several books on humanitarian action, including La France de la solidarité (Cesno, 2002), Critique de la raison humanitaire (dir. with Karl Blanchet, preface by Rony Brauman), published by Le Cavalier Bleu in 2006 (translated into English by Columbia University Press/Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd in 2011 under the title Many Reasons to Intervene: French and British Approaches to Humanitarian Action) and L'adieu à l'humanitaire. Les ONG au défi de l'offensive néolibérale (Éditions Charles Léopold Mayer, 2015). He is also the author of stories (Chronique d'un monde disparu, 2008 and « C'est de Chine que je t'écris... », 2004) published by Le Seuil and short stories (Hong Kong, un parfum d'éternité, 2010) published by Elytis. His latest story – L’iconoclaste. L’histoire véritable d’Auguste François, consul, photographe, explorateur, misanthrope, incorruptible et ennemi des intrigants – was published in May 2014 by Éditions du Pacifique. In 2020, he wrote the biography of Médecins du Monde, La belle histoire.
Stephanie leads the ACF’s Knowledge LAB project, an innovative pilot project aiming at incubating innovative approaches and methodologies to improve the knowledge management across Action Against Hunger's international network. Collaborating closely with the research, advocacy, technical and operations department , ACF Knowledge LAB explores ways of effectively connecting knowledge with action in order to improve the way the organisation fights against hunger.
Sophie Zaccaria is a physiotherapist and holds a master’s degree in social practices of development from Institute of Economic and Social Development Studies (IEDES). She has worked with the United Nations in Gaza, South Africa and Cambodia, and then in France with various NGOs such as CCFD-Terre Solidaire. She has taught and continues to teach in various master's degrees in international solidarity actions at the Senghor Institute of the Francophonie, the Catholic Institute of Paris and IEDES. After having been in charge of the health and advocacy department at Médecins du Monde, she is now attached to the direction in charge of transversal issues.