May 2021 marks the fifth anniversary of the first World Humanitarian Summit and the agreed Grand Bargain (GB). The GB was planned as a key initiative to substantially reform humanitarian action based on ten commitments. As its five-year timeframe is coming to an end, it is time to take stock: what has been achieved and what is yet to be done? Challenges like the inclusion of Global South views and representatives as well as donor and INGO performances in driving and blocking reform at the same time will be discussed, as well as a potential GB 2.0 in the context of a renewed humanitarian reform debate linked to the global Covid-19 response.
Honouring the Grand Bargain commitment to strengthen local humanitarian assistance, many international organisations are currently adapting their role in operational humanitarian assistance, including their presence on the ground. While some are decentralising their work, building new networks, others are developing exit-plans to ultimately pull out of operational work at all. In this panel we will hear from dedicated practitioners from different regions how these diverse approaches to the future role of INGOs in localised humanitarian assistance play out in practice.
Quality funding is aside localisation issues one of the priority topics in the focus for an extended Grand Bargain 2.0 process. This mirrors achievements as well as ongoing challenges of donors, UN agencies and NGOs to provide or forward quality funding in terms of flexible and multiyear support in a transparent manner. The session will discuss donor governments’ and agencies’ performances as well as trends often perceived as conflicting like the “accountability” and “value for money” debates. It will deepen its analysis based on the examples of Germany as a donor and the START fund as a transferring body.