Training & Workshops: The Humanitarian Space

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06 Jul International Summer School in Forced Migration, July 2015

Applications are invited for the 2015 International Summer School in Forced Migration. Now in its 26th year, the Summer School offers an intensive, interdisciplinary and participative approach to the study of forced migration. It aims to enable people working with refugees and other forced migrants to reflect critically on the forces and institutions that dominate the world of the displaced.

Please note: Last year's course was heavily oversubscribed, so we encourage you to apply early in order to avoid disappointment.

Closing date for applications: 1 May 2015

Closing date for receipt of all course fees: 15 May 2015

For all enquiries, please contact Tara-Sienna Hartman at

Click here to download the course brochure

The Summer School is intended for:

  • Mid-career and senior policymakers and practitioners involved with humanitarian assistance and policy making for forced migrants. Participants typically include host government officials, intergovernmental and non-governmental agency personnel engaged in planning, administering and co-ordinating assistance.
  • Researchers specialising in the study of forced migration.

This year we will be welcoming an exciting roster of expert tutors and guest lecturers to the course. For more details, please visit:

Course structure

Over three weeks, the course looks at the complex phenomenon of forced migration from a number of different angles. Mandatory core modules normally include:

  • Conceptualising Forced Migration
  • The globalisation of forced migration
  • Asylum policy and international refugee law
  • Negotiating institutional responses
  • Internally Displaced Persons

Three optional modules for 2015 (participants choose one) are likely to include:

  • Human smuggling: legal, political and ethical perspectives
  • Palestinian refugees and international law
  • Psychosocial support for forced migrants

For more information, please visit:

Full course details including how to apply, entry requirements and fees can be found at: For all enquiries, please contact Tara-Sienna Hartman at


09 Jul PHAP Online Learning Series on Humanitarian Law and Policy: Qualification of Armed Conflict and Determining the Applicable Law


Session description

Qualifying – or classifying – a situation as an international armed conflict (IAC) or non-international armed conflict (NIAC) is an important and often necessary step when determining whether the rules of international humanitarian law (IHL) apply in a specific context. The application of IAC or NIAC rules to a given scenario is of significant consequence; for instance, under IHL the standards governing the use of lethal force in an IAC or NIAC are far more permissive than those that apply during peacetime. The basic distinction between IACs and NIACs is reflected in both treaty and customary law, and dictates which rules apply to a particular situation. For instance, the treaty rules regulating conduct of hostilities and the treaty rules addressing humanitarian access differ in an IAC as compared to a NIAC.

This session will provide an introduction to conducting a qualification analysis under IHL. It will address such questions as:

  • What is the value or utility of such an exercise?
  • Who undertakes such an exercise and why? Is there a final arbiter of such an analysis?
  • What are the definitions of an IAC and a NIAC? Where does occupation fit in?
  • When does a situation of violence become an IAC or NIAC?
  • What are some of the challenges in qualifying a situation as an armed conflict?


These issues and challenges will be picked up in the next session when two case studies will be analyzed, with a focus on the technicalities of qualifying a situation and the relevance of such an exercise to humanitarian practitioners.

Learning objectives

  • Familiarity with the binary framework of IAC and NIAC.
  • Awareness of the relevance and utility of conducting a qualification analysis
  • Understanding of the definition of IAC and NIAC, and the consequences for various actors (i.e. military, humanitarian, etc.)
  • Familiarity with the threshold indicia relevant to IAC and NIAC
  • Ability to walk through a qualification analysis


16 Jul Master HOPE in Humanitarian Operations in Emergencies Managing Projects, People, Administration & Logistic in the field

ASVI Social Change, the most important school for professionals in the non-profit sector, is pleased to announce the start of the second edition of the master HOPE in Humanitarian Operations in Emergencies Managing Projects, People, Administration & Logistic in the field.

Hope is the first master in Italy that focuses on the Humanitarian subject, with INTERSOS as Main Partner. The Director of the Master is Marco Bertotto, Head of Public Awareness - Medici Senza Frontiere (
Médecins Sans Frontières).

HOPE' s mission is to educate, through an international approach, professionals and managers engaged in humanitarian assistance.
HOPE is open to all those who wish to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to operate in a responsible and effective operations of prevention and response to reduce the damage caused by disaster in complex emergencies.
The program offers a complete and advanced training on the main challenges and trends in the humanitarian sector, by a practice-oriented operational learning.

The Master is aimed at those who want to work within the NGOs, the UN and other international organizations with strategic operational functions in the field of international humanitarian assistance.

The Master is a one year-course and is divided into 120 hours of lessons in class, 40 hours of workshops and field simulation, 100 hours of group work and 620 hours of e-learning.
An intensive week of field simulation is also provided by the training center UNHRD-WFP in San Vito dei Normanni in Brindisi.

To find out more  visit the page;

Request information on the Master’programme.


Start of Master: 17 June 2015 (welcome on e-learning platform).


Closing of enrolment: 12 June 2015




28 Jul Urban Humanitarian Emergencies Course

Humanitarian organizations, international agencies and governments that serve populations affected by crises find themselves increasingly in urban settings. Agencies face new challenges, and some potential advantages, in these complex urban environments and are only just learning how to approach them. These new challenges take many forms: complicated physical layouts, poorly prepared institutions and infrastructure, a mixed target population of refugees and underserved locals. Furthermore, coordination of NGOs, communities as well as local authorities calls for urgent education and training in urban crises.

The Urban Humanitarian Emergencies Course is a three-day training organized by the Humanitarian Academy at Harvard's Lavine Family Humanitarian Studies Initiative to train humanitarian professionals on the current issues and practices involved in this unique and expanding area of research and practice. The course faculty is experienced in humanitarian training and has on-the-ground experience with humanitarian crises in urban areas.

The three-day course will include curriculum covering all aspects of the urban humanitarian environment.

  • Response to Recovery
  • Coordination
  • Communication
  • Assessment and Prioritization
  • Integrated Sectors
  • Finance and Economy
  • Markets
  • Housing and Shelter
  • Delivering Aid
  • Violence and Protection
  • Health
  • Exit Strategy

More information, including information about the registration process, can be found here.



03 Aug Contemplative-Based Resilience Training for Humanitarian Aid Workers

Please join us from August 3rd to 7th in Garrison, New York, for a CBR (Contemplative-Based Resilience) Training. We’ve designed this CBR Training for humanitarian aid and human rights workers both in the field and in the office back home. With an emphasis on secular meditation, mindful movement, and education about the effects of chronic stress on the body and mind, the training offers an integrative approach to managing stress and trauma, providing participants with a suite of tools to help maintain mental health and resilience no matter how challenging the work.

Held in a beautiful, retreat-like setting on the Hudson River, with delicious food, participants will have ample opportunities to rest, recharge and reflect on their meaningful work. After completing the training, they will have tools to practice the ABCs of resilience (Awareness, Balance and Connection) daily, sustaining their well-being even in the most stressful circumstances. It’s an invaluable experience that will benefit them—and the people they help—for many years to come.

Scholarships are available through an application process to those who are in financial need. For further details, please see the attached flyer or visit our event page

The cost of the four-day program is $1100 single occupancy, $950 double occupancy, inclusive of room and board and all program fees. Scholarship assistance is available upon application.


23 Feb Humanitarian Diplomacy Diploma Course (Feb 2015)

We are now accepting applications for the February 2015 session of the Humanitarian Diplomacy online diploma course, offered by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in cooperation with DiploFoundation. This 12-week course, led by Ambassador Christopher Lamb, extends the knowledge base and develops practical skills of current and future practitioners in humanitarian diplomacy and policy. In a supportive international online environment, the course familiarises participants with basic definitions, concepts, actors, and institutions in the field of humanitarian diplomacy, introduces international humanitarian law, hones advocacy and negotiation skills, develops participants’ research skills, and increases their understanding of national and regional humanitarian diplomacy activities.

This course is currently offered in English, however participants who are more comfortable with French will have the option to write and submit some course assignments and the final research paper in French.

The course starts on 23 February 2015. The application deadline is 12 January 2015. For more details and to apply, please visit the course webpage. Contact us in case of questions. 
What do former participants say about the course?

In this short video, alumni member Sabrina Konzok from the German Youth Red Cross explains the value of the international exchange of ideas and experiences which the course facilitated.

In another video, alumni member Dolf van Muijen from the Netherlands Red Cross explains how the course was both inspiring and enabling due to the interaction with highly experienced tutors and other participants from diverse backgrounds. The course allowed him to take a step back from his day-to-day work to reflect on his practice and how it fits into a wider humanitarian diplomacy strategy.

Margarita Griffith, Learning Officer, America Zone Office, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Panama, says that ‘both professionally and personally, I now have a broader understanding of the humanitarian world, the fundamental laws and principles, and the different actors who are part of it. This has expanded my thinking about possible partnerships and alliances in order to strengthen my work in the Federation, and the different aspects and steps I need to consider in order to make such partnerships happen.’ Read an interview with Margarita on Diplo’s blog.


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