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  Humanitarian access and ethics: decision-making in unsafe environments  
9 November 2016 10:30 - 12:00 (GMT), Overseas Development Institute London offices and streamed live online

Ensuring staff safety in war zones while trying to get humanitarian aid to those most in need means aid organisations regularly have to make difficult decisions on risk management. Compromise is inevitable, but aid agencies must be able to manage these challenges without losing sight of ethical considerations.

How can humanitarian organisations help people caught up in conflicts, when these conflicts make it dangerous for aid workers to operate safely? How can organisations stay true to core humanitarian principles when negotiating access in these environments? Are current risk management strategies doing enough to balance these issues and ensure safe access?

This event launches the Humanitarian Practice Network’s 80th Network Paper ‘Tug of war: ethical decision-making to enable humanitarian access in high-risk environments’. The paper draws primarily on research conducted in Afghanistan, Somalia, South Sudan and Syria, four of the most dangerous humanitarian contexts in the world.  Reflecting on their own experience and research, experts discuss how aid agencies and humanitarian workers can best address the risks and challenges inherent in decision-making on access in high-risk environments.


Abdurahman Sharif @AbdurahmanShar - Director, Somalia NGO Consortium

Katherine Haver @KatherineHaver - Partner, Humanitarian Outcomes (via videolink)
Fiona Terry - Independent researcher, ICRC (speaking in a personal capacity)
Imran Madden @imranmadden - Director, Islamic Relief

Contributing Chair:

Wendy Fenton @WendyFenton1 - Coordinator, Humanitarian Practice Network

To register, please visit the event webpage. You can also follow the discussion on Twitter with the hashtag #ethicalaccess.


ODI - Humanitarian Policy Group

203 Blackfriars Road
London SE1 8NJ, UK
T: +44 (0)20 7922 0300

Registered charity
number 228248

Photo © Xinhua/Pan Chaoyue

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Overseas Development Institute (ODI) · 203 Blackfriars Road, London, United Kingdom · London, England SE1 8NJ · United Kingdom