People feel outrage and frustration at the challenges to humanity and the lack of global unity and solidarity to end this suffering and are calling for change.

The UN Secretary-General believes the following core responsibilities are critical to delivering better for humanity:

  1. global leadership to prevent and end conflicts;
  2. uphold the norms that safeguard humanity;
  3. leave no one behind;
  4. change people’s lives – from delivering aid to ending need; and
  5. invest in humanity.


Humanitarian and Development Nexus: 

Core Responsibility Four: Change people’s lives – from delivering aid to ending need

Ending need requires reinforcing local systems, anticipating crises and transcending the humanitarian-development divide.


While international humanitarian and development approaches bring relief and advancement to millions, they too often fail to sustainably improve the prospects of many people in fragile and crisis-prone environments. Millions are trapped in dependency on short-term aid that keeps them alive but falls short of ensuring their safety, dignity and ability to thrive and be self-reliant over the long term.

We must return our focus to the people at the centre of these crises, moving beyond short-term, supply-driven response efforts towards demand-driven outcomes that reduce need and vulnerability. Achieving this will require international providers to set aside artificial institutional labels of “development” or “humanitarian”, working together over multi-year horizons with the SDGs as our common overall results and accountability framework.

The UN Secretary-General therefore urges the international aid system, including the UN, NGOs, and donors to commit to working in a new paradigm marked by three fundamental shifts:

  1. reinforce, do not replace, national and local systems;
  2. anticipate, do not wait, for crises; and
  3. transcend the humanitarian-development divide by working towards collective outcomes, based on comparative advantage and over multi-year timeframes.


The New Way of Working : 

Deliver collective outcomes: transcend humanitarian-development divides

  1. Context matters: create joint problem statements driven by data and analysis
  2. Move from individual short-term projects to collective outcomes
  3. Draw on comparative advantage
  4. Shift from coordinating inputs to achieving outcomes together
  5. Empower leadership for collective outcomes
  6. Monitor progress: accountability for change
  7. Retain emergency capacity
  8. Finance collective outcomes


(From the Report of the UN Secretary-General for the World Humanitarian Summit : One Humanity: Shared Responsability)


Early Recovery in the Humanitarian Development Nexus

Early Recovery is an approach that addresses recovery needs that arise during the humanitarian phase of an emergency, using humanitarian mechanisms that align with development principles. It enables people to use the benefits of humanitarian action to seize development opportunities, builds resilience, and establishes a sustainable process of recovery from crisis.

Early Recovery is both an approach to humanitarian response which, through enhanced coordination, focuses on strengthening resilience, re-building or strengthening capacity, and contributing to solving rather than exacerbating long standing problems which have contributed to a crisis; and also a set of specific programmatic actions to help people to move from dependence on humanitarian relief towards development.


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Key Documents

Commitment to Action

Transcending Humanitarian-Development divides

Chaging People's Lives : From Delivering Aid to Ending Need

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One Humanity: Shared Responsability

Report of the Secretary-General for the World Humanitarian Summit

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Humanitarian-Development Cooperation

After the World Humanitarian Summit : Better humanitarian development cooperation for sustainable results on the ground

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