IRRC No. 884

Fit for purpose: the role of modern professionalism in evolving the humanitarian endeavor

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The humanitarian enterprise has grown in size and complexity over the past generation. Modern systems of scrutiny and accountability demand a higher level of accountability than ever before, both to programme beneficiaries and to donors. This, we believe, puts pressure on the system to become more professional and on aid workers to consider the establishment of a formal profession of humanitarian aid. This article reports on research carried out to test this hypothesis and on an approach that is presently being used to establish the necessary components of a professional system.

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