Humanitarian Aid To Fragile States Must Be Doubled, Reformed To Improve Effectiveness, Efficiency

Foreign Affairs: Improving Humanitarian Aid
David Miliband, president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, and Ravi Gurumurthy, vice president for strategy and innovation at IRC

“…Over the next decade, donors need to not just double the amount of aid directed to the places of greatest need but also undertake reforms that seek to double the productivity of aid spending. Doing that would require significant shifts in practices and assumptions. … The principles the humanitarian sector lives by — not least, independence and impartiality — are extraordinarily powerful. But the sector is also increasingly a place of missed targets: appeals that are not met, pledges that are not delivered, ideals that are not translated into action. That need not be the case. The sector requires more funding, but it also has to embrace new ways of doing business: more joined together, more evidence-based, more outcome-focused, more hardheaded. This agenda is not a substitute for political action to prevent and stop wars. … In the midst of multiple global crises and pressure across the world for governments to focus on the home front, however, the prospects for renewed political will are slim. That forces the humanitarian sector onto the frontlines. The best armor will be best practices” (July/August).