Emergency Gap

The project responds to MSF’s concerns regarding the declining emergency response capacity and presence of humanitarian actors in conflict zones. The Emergency Gap work aims to diagnose the drivers of this loss of emergency focus and to analyse the enablers and disablers for the provision of effective response in acute conflict settings. The project also aspires to stimulate debate with a view to identifying better strategic and operational approaches for delivering critical assistance to people trapped in situations of armed conflict.

Case Study

June 2017

An emergency WASH gap exists – there is little disagreement on this point within the humanitarian sector. There is a paucity of emergency WASH capacity, but a surplus of complacency. This report provides an overview of both historical trends and current challenges in emergency WASH programming. Some ways forward are suggested and can be summarised as three key take-home points.

Emergency gap series 06

April 2017

This paper expands on the structural elements of the emergency gap analysis by providing critical examination of the current setup of the humanitarian sector and its financing architecture.

Case study

March 2017

This paper examines the incursion of military and political actors into the humanitarian realm in Mali, a context shaped by the rationales of “integration”, “stabilisation” and “counter-terrorism”, and argues that it is jeopardising humanitarian action in the country.

Emergency gap series 01

April 2016

This first paper lays out MSF’s concern about the lack of sufficient and adequate humanitarian response capacity in the acute phase of a conflict.

Emergency gap series 05

January 2017

This paper offers a reflection on the subject of risk acceptance, and some of the underlying factors that –apart from the actual security threat– influence security decision-making in the humanitarian sector.

Case study

November 2016

This case study of the ‘humanitarian system’s’ response to a conflict driven displacement crisis in the Diffa region of Niger explores if there is an ‘Emergency Gap’. This report concludes that there has been a gap in what could reasonably be expected in terms of effective humanitarian response, and that the reasons for this gap are found in an analysis of the internal dynamics of the system as much as in any external constraints.

Livestreamed public event

Tuesday, November, the 29th. 15:00-16:30 hs (GMT). Paris 16.00p.m. / New York 10:00 a.m./ Sanaa 17:00p.m. / Amman 17:00p.m.

Overseas Development Institute (ODI) & Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance in Humanitarian Action (ALNAP), London

Emergency gap series 04

December 2016

The new WHS paradigm offers a vision for humanitarian action that takes coherence too far, effectively merging humanitarianism into the overarching aid project of the SDGs. The aid sector must work to strengthen complementarity across responders, while preserving the critical distinctions between humanitarian and other forms of action.

Emergency gap series 03

November 2016

This paper analyses the role of national and local actors in humanitarian action based on MSF’s experiences in areas within conflict affected countries where the most urgent needs are found.

Case study

May 2016

The humanitarian community has failed to adequately respond to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. This report examines how humanitarian organisations responded to the crisis in 2015 and analyses the obstacles and enablers to aid delivery. Four themes have been explored in detail: humanitarian leadership; political issues and negotiated access; security management; and resources.

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