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Centre for Humanitarian Action

Lárionad um Ghníomh Daonnúil

Latest News


Humanitarian Congress in Berlin

 Ronan McDermott of UCD's Centre for Humanitarian Action gave a talk at the recent Humanitarian Congress in Berlin on how international humanitarian law governs humanitarian assistance.  In his talk Ronan emphasised how international humanitarian law provides for access to civilian populations in need by humanitarian actors that adhere to the principles of humanity, impartiality and neutrality.  He also outlined the various provisions within international humanitarian law that protect medical and humanitarian personnel in times of armed conflict.  In the same panel Katja Schöberl of German Red Cross outlined the core principles of international humanitarian law and the importance of understanding the conditions under which international humanitarian law applies

 Berlin Humanitarian Congresss


Protecting the Unprotected
Humanitarian Action and Human Rights after the WHS Conference.

The conference was organised by the ​Institute for International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict at Ruhr University Bochum. It took place from 21st September 2016 to 22nd September 2016, 
Dr Pat Gibbons and Dr Ronan McDermott chaired sessions during the conference.




World Humanitarian Summit Update

WHS Logo

Ireland is preparing for the World Humanitarian Summit to be held in 2016. The Irish Government has said it will use the opportunity of the Summit to re-affirm Ireland's national commitment to principled humanitarian action and to articulate Irish perspectives on its future. The CHA will be involced in disseminating information as the sector prepares for this important event.

More information on the ongoing consultative process is availale here.


Launch of IDRL Report in association with the Irish Red Cross

The UCD CHA was commissioned by the Irish Red Cross in April 2013 to undertake a study with the objective of outlining Ireland’s legal and policy framework for facilitating an international disaster response and determining how it can be strengthened in accordance with both the HNS and IDRL Guidelines.

IDRL Launch

©Sean Moore, Irish Red Cross

Ronan McDermott spearheaded this research and spoke at the launch of this report June 24th this year. The report ‘A Study for Strengthening the Legal and Policy Framework for International Disaster Response in Ireland’ is available online at here. Also available is the IDRL Press Release.


NOHA is Hiring - Call for CV's for Operations Manager

The Newtork on Humanitarian Action (NOHA) is recruiting an operations manager. The successful candidate will provide support to the General Secretariat in the planning,implementation and evaluatiion of NOHA programmes and projects in accordance with approved policies and guidlines. More information on this position and application details are available by clicking the below link:

NOHA Operations Manager


Call for Applications: DSA Ireland Postgraduate Research Workshop 2014

Now in its fourth year, DSA Ireland, with support from Kimmage Development Studies Centre, is pleased to announce the annual two day postgraduate research workshop to be held 19-20 June 2014.The workshop provides an energetic environment in which postgraduate researchers can present and refine their work; improve their skills for communicating confidently in networking conversations; develop contacts with other researchers, potential collaborators or future employers; and engage in lively discussion with peer and experienced researchers and practitioners. The deadline for applications is 16 May 2014. The full call and application forms are available on the DSA Ireland website. There is no registration fee to attend the workshop. Limited support is available to people travelling from outside the Dublin region. Please send any queries to


New NOHA logo

New Network on Humanitarian Assistance (NOHA) website

The new NOHA wesbite is now up and running. The website now includes information on the Master's programme and other NOHA products as well as information on research projects, events and vacancies. The website will be updated regularly so please check back soon! 



GHA 2013

 Global Humanitarian Assistance Report 2013 launched -   17th July 2013

 The 10th edition of the GHA Report has been  launched. The report reveals that US$17.9 billion was  given to international humanitarian response in 2012,  which is down US$1.5 billion from 2011. The full report  can be found here.






Former OCHA Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator, Dr. Catherine Bragg, appointed as Adjunct to UCD Centre for Humanitarian Action

DAVOS/SWITZERLAND, 27JAN10 - Catherine Bragg, Assistant Secretary-General, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs(OCHA), New York captured during the press conference 'siuation of haiti' of the Annual Meeting 2010 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 27, 2010 at the Congress Centre.. The UCD Centre for Humanitarian Action is pleased  to announce the appointment of former OCHA  Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator, Dr. Catherine  Bragg,  as an adjunct to the CHA. Dr. Bragg held the  UN position from her appointment by UN Secretary-  General Ban Ki-moon in December 2007 until  February 2013. She was previously Director-General  of the Humanitarian Assistance, Peace and Security  Programme in the Canadian International  Development  Agency (CIDA). Dr. Bragg will be visiting  UCD over the course of the year and will link up with  the CHA to deliver talks to UCD students. 


 Photo: World Economic Forum, Davos 2010 by Michael Wuertenberg


Humanitarian Roundtable Ireland report

Humanitarian Roundtable pic  On 3rd April, NOHA partnered with VOICE and Dóchas to  organise a roundtable on current issues and trends in  humanitarian action, namely the European Consensus on  Humanitarian Action, the current debate around resilience,  and the EU Aid Volunteers. It aimed to take the opportunity  of the VOICE Board, NOHA Board and Member States’  representatives from the Council Working Party on  Humanitarian Aid and Food Aid (COHAFA) all being in Dublin  on the occasion of several high-level exchanges under the  Irish EU Presidency. The event was held at UCD Newman  House on St. Stephen's Green, Dublin. The report from the  event can be found here: Humanitarian Roundtable report 


UCD Centre for Humanitarian Action to work with Irish Red Cross on International Disaster Relief Law Study - 7th May 2013

Irish Red Cross Logo

UCD Centre for Humanitarian Action (CHA) has been commissioned by Irish Red Cross to produce a report aimed at determining how Ireland’s legal and policy framework for facilitating international disaster relief can be strengthened.  The research conducted by CHA will investigate the extent to which Ireland’s existing legal and policy framework prevents or mitigates such issues from arising and will also provide recommendations in consultation with the relevant stakeholders concerning how Ireland can strengthen its legal preparedness in accordance with international guidelines.  The report will be presented at a national workshop organised by Ihe Irish Red Cross in October 2013.  For further information concerning the study please contact Ronan at


NOHA Alumna wins presitgious Rolex Award

selene biffi UCD Master's in Humanitarian Action  alumna, Selene Biffi, has been  named a 2012 Young Laureate for  Cultural Heritage by the Rolex  Awards for Enterprise. The Award  will help her organisation, Plain Ink,  to establish an academy in Kabul,  Afghanistan, that will encourage the  revitilisation of traditional  stroytelling amongst unemployed  youth. Congratulations to Selene!

Photo: Rolex Awards/Reto Albertalli
Reference: RAE12SB_01-074


TEDx Deusto now on Youtube

TEDx Deusto logo 



The TEDx event organised by NOHA Master's students in Deusto took place at the end of June this year. The team have now posted 7 new videos of talks given during the event on Youtube - see Siddharth Chatterjee's talk, Head Diplomant at IFRC, on Demobilizing Child Soldiers here.


World Disasters Report 2012 - 16th October 2012

World Disasters Report 2012 The International Federation of Red Cross and Red  Crescent Societies (IFRC) have launched their annual  World Disasters Report. The 2012 edition of the report  focuses on forced migration and displacement. The  report estimates that there are 703 million forced  migrants worldwide, of whom 15 million have been  displaced due to disasters and 43 million due to conflict  or violence. The report can be downloaded here





Front cover of the NOHA C'nect July 2012 magazine NOHA C'nect 2012 

 NOHA 2011/12 students have released this year's  edition of the NOHA student magazine, 'C'nect'.  Articles cover  subjects as varied as comment pieces  on Darfur and the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami as well  as interviews with  NOHA faculty members and  reports from second semester field trips. There's  also an article on the TEDx Deusto event and a  useful  interview with Kristine Eck from Uppsala  University  on field research. To read the magazine,  click here: NOHA C'nect magazine, July 2012 edition



EUPRHA website launch - 22nd August 2012

EUPHRA logo 

The NOHA initiative, EUPRHA (European Universities on Professionalization on Humanitarian Action), has launched its website. The website gives more information on the project and lists all its partners. The three pillars of EUPRHA are Experience and Reality: Mapping Humanitarian Action in Europe; Need and Expectations: A Qualifications Framework for Humanitarian Action; and Trends and Prospects: Skills for New Jobs. 


World Humanitarian Day - 19th August 20120

World Humanitarian Day is the international day to recognise humanitarians who face danger in order to save lives, alleviate suffering and preserve human dignity. The signer Beyonce was the face of this year's campaign called "I Was Here".  


Global Humanitarian Assistance Logo Global Humanitarian Assistance Report 2012  launched - 19th July 2012  The Global Humanitarian  Assistance (GHA) Report 2012 brings together data on  humanitarian financing to provide a comprehensive  picture of the current levels of funding and spending  in the humanitarian system. This year's report can be found here


Front page of ALNAP's State of the Humanitarian System Report ALNAP's State of the Humanitarian System report  launched - 4th July 2012

 The Active Learning Network for Accountability and  Performance in Humanitarian Action (ALNAP) has  launched its first report on the humanitarian system in  London. The report covers data from the last two  years and aims to gain a holistic undetanding of all the  actors and mechanisms involved in humanitarian  action.  It highlights five main areas that need to be  focused on  in the future: coverage/sufficiency;  effectiveness;  relevance/appropriateness;  connectedness; and  coherence. To read the report  or watch a short video on the study, please see here.






For the latest news on Humanitarian Action around the world, visit these sites: