Localisation

Why? The Grand Bargain, drawing on the report of the High-Level Panel on Humanitarian Financing, argues for ‘localisation’ because it will be more costs-effective. Unfortunately, who gets what share of the money has become a major consideration, and source of resistance to effective localisation.

Why would supporting local capacities, to the point that they themselves can handle most crisis responses by themselves, not be a valued strategic objective? Governments, like the ones in Nepal and Indonesia, are also beginning to restrict the number of international relief agencies coming in and taking over. So, do we want to keep aid-recipient countries dependent? Are we trying to sustain and expand our relief business – or work ourselves out of a job? Read the full article -   Understanding The Localisation Debate    Listening to over 250 local CSOs allowed GMI to identify seven areas where they often find the relationship with international relief actors frustrating – and where they want to see change. International agencies have roles to play, but local actors want equitable partnerships, with mutual accountability and -where needed- much more effective strengthening of their institutional capacities.

Why would supporting local capacities, to the point that they themselves can handle most crisis responses by themselves, not be a valued strategic objective? Governments, like the ones in Nepal and Indonesia, are also beginning to restrict the number of international relief agencies coming in and taking over. So, do we want to keep aid-recipient countries dependent? Are we trying to sustain and expand our relief business – or work ourselves out of a job? Read the full article - Understanding The Localisation Debate

Listening to over 250 local CSOs allowed GMI to identify seven areas where they often find the relationship with international relief actors frustrating – and where they want to see change. International agencies have roles to play, but local actors want equitable partnerships, with mutual accountability and -where needed- much more effective strengthening of their institutional capacities.

Read the reports:   The Start Fund, Start Network And Localisation: Current Situation And Future Directions, Executive Summary – S. Patel & K. Van Brabant, Global Mentoring Initiative, April 2017    The Start Fund, Start Network And Localisation: Current Situation And Future Directions  -  Smruti Patel & Koenraad Van Brabant, Global Mentoring Initiative, April 2017    Start Network, Bangladesh Review - Going The Extra Mile!, Smruti Patel, April 2017   The framework has been tested with various local CSOs and is used as is or with small modifications by e.g. the Start Network, the Dutch Relief Alliance, the Pacific Islands NGO network, Humanitarian Advisory Group, other INGOs, and UNICEF. But a broader perspective is needed, that asks more strategic questions.

Read the reports:

The Start Fund, Start Network And Localisation: Current Situation And Future Directions, Executive Summary – S. Patel & K. Van Brabant, Global Mentoring Initiative, April 2017

The Start Fund, Start Network And Localisation: Current Situation And Future Directions - Smruti Patel & Koenraad Van Brabant, Global Mentoring Initiative, April 2017

Start Network, Bangladesh Review - Going The Extra Mile!, Smruti Patel, April 2017

The framework has been tested with various local CSOs and is used as is or with small modifications by e.g. the Start Network, the Dutch Relief Alliance, the Pacific Islands NGO network, Humanitarian Advisory Group, other INGOs, and UNICEF. But a broader perspective is needed, that asks more strategic questions.

Strategic Framework_3.jpg
  • How do we make our collective, global, or ‘system-wide’ capacity better prepared to respond to a crisis in ways that maximise the participation of affected populations and reinforces rather than replaces local and national capacities?

  • What will make our own organisation better prepared to do this?

  • What strategic decisions for a particular crisis response, will create enabling conditions for this?

  • What does localisation mean for our individual (and collective) operational practices?

GMI RESOURCES

Locally-Led Response. An overview of GMI’s perspective and work on localisation (April 2019)
Understanding the Localisation Debate. An introduction to a confusing conversation (2017)
Localisation in Practice. Emerging indicators and practical recommendations. How the seven dimensions framework can be used for an assessment of the relationship and for a negotiation or an agreement on how to improve its quality. (July 2018)
The Finance and Economics of Localisation. Does the 25% target guarantee us that crisis response will be more cost-effective because they are lead by strong local/national actors?
Localisation and Globalisation. The conversation gets serious. Localisation as driver of globalisation!? (April 2019)
Prepared for Partnership. Trust and distrust in international cooperation. Different attitudes to local actors in the relief sector and the peacebuilding field. (February 2019)
Localisation. Partnership chronicles. How partnering with international agencies can be a risk for local and national CSOs. (January 2016)
Bring ‘Humanity’ and ‘Dignity’ back into the Relief Industry. Does all our professionalisation, technology and interest in data distract us from connecting with the human and social being that a crisis-affected person wants to be? (February 2010)
Debating The Grand Bargain In Bangladesh. Did the international response to the Rohingya refugee crisis set back localisation in Bangladesh? (March 2018)
Most Training Does not Develop Organisational Capacity: What we need to do differently. Questioning the effectiveness of the favourite ‘capacity-development approach. (August 2016)
Capacity-development in International Cooperation. Time to get serious. Do you have the capacity-to-develop capacities? (May 2017)
Localisation in Conflict Situations. Not holier than thou!? Nuancing the assertion of generally superior impartiality of international agencies. (January 2017)
Localisation and NGOs. Different interpretations, different outcomes. Is localisation a technical or a political issue? Is it about decentralisation, transformation, or a rich and complementary biodiversity? (November 2016)
Impact Of The Tsunami Response On Local And National Capacities. The first ever evaluation into this type of impact (July 2006) 

Alliance for Empowered Partnerships

THE LOCAL PERSPECTIVE ON PARTNERSHIPS AND ACCOUNTABILITY

In line with commitment to localisation, the objective of this project is to identify good practice and principles of equitable partnership and accountability. This will be achieved by local organisations sharing their own definitions of  'partnership principles' and 'accountability standards'. Through carrying out consultations and interviews with local organisations in various contexts, this project will compile indicators of partnership principles and accountability standards from the local perspective. Taking an inclusive approach, the methodology will be developed by local actors to measure progress. This will provide a simple means by which the local organisations can assess the progress towards equitable partnership and accountability. It will help in building trust and credibility with partners, donors and the general public.

This project will be carried out in collaboration with COAST Trust in Bangladesh and Syrian organisations. We will also look for collaboration with like-minded organisations who would like to contribute to localisation and a more effective aid system.  Let the local responders lead in Sulawesi Tsunami Response: Duplication of Mistakes will become Luxury"

Statement from Alliance for Empowering Partnerships

Our thoughts are with the people affected by the Tsunami and the local and national responders who have been trying to respond in the aftermath of the destruction caused by the Tsunami. We commend the efforts of local people to deal with search, rescue and assistance in the absence of outside help. In solidarity with the affected people, and In light of the appeals for funds to respond to the disaster around the world we urge that the International Actors and donors respect the commitments they have made in the Grand Bargain and Charter 4 Change.

We urge the donors to ensure that the international actors they are funding adhere to the commitment on Accountability to Affected population, localization and transparency and accountability. Read our statement of solidarity.

International Conveners of Alliance 4 Empowering Partnerships

Website: www.A4EP.net

Position paper - Grand Bargain

Equal partners not passengers

The A4EP, which is a network of organisations committed to strengthen the humanitarian architecture, has produced this advocacy position paper, which aims to positively influence the debate towards transformation of the humanitarian system. A4EP urges the GB signatories and the secretariat to work in a more open and transparent manner, and in the spirit of equitable partnership, which is espoused in the GB.  We urge the localisation work stream co-conveners to be more transparent in their decision-making and embrace more local actors to make it truly representative. Most of its meetings should be held in aid-recipient countries, not in Western capitals. The members of A4EP are ready to take their responsibility and work with the GB secretariat and the localisation work stream to achieve this.

International Conveners of Alliance 4 Empowering Partnerships

Website: www.A4EP.net

SECTOR RESOURCES

Opportunity Knocks: Realising The Potential Of Partnerships In The Nepal Earthquake Response

Publication: Missed Opportunities Consortium, November 2016

Outcome Of The World Humanitarian Summit: Report Of The Secretary-General

Publication: World Humanitarian Summit, UN General Assembly, August 2016

Missed Out: The Role Of Local Actors In The Humanitarian Response In The South Sudan Conflict

Publication: Missed Opportunities Consortium, April 2016

Syrian Civil Society And The Swiss Humanitarian Community, Challenge, Opportunity And The Future Of Syria.

Publication: Geo Expertise, IHEID, December 2015.

Breaking The Hourglass: Partnerships In Remote Management Settings–The Cases Of Syria And Iraqi Kurdistan

Publication : Tufts University, Feinstein International Centre, February 2015.

Missed Again: Making Space For Partnership In The Typhoon Haiyan Response

Publication: Missed Opportunities Consortium, June 2014

Missed Opportunities: The Case For Strengthening National And Local Partnership-Based Humanitarian Responses

Publication: Missed Opportunities Consortium, October 2013

Time to Listen: Hearing People on the Receiving End of International Aid, 2014