UM: Management in Humanitarian Action

Lecture, Seminar
  • Course description

    The study-unit will cover a set of basic practical issues related to humanitarian action:
    - Basic introduction to management of humanitarian operations
    - Basic introduction to management of development projects
    - Personnel management (including intercultural issues and security issues) in humanitarian organizations
    - Financial management, fund-raising, budgeting, accounting, and reporting
    - Project cycle management
    - Self-evaluation and external evaluation
    - Management of external relations
    - Dealing with trauma and cultural adjustment issues.
  • Learning outcomes

    1. Knowledge & Understanding: By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
    - develop and co-manage (initially under supervision) small-scale project or intervention
    - recognize the complexity personnel management issues involved in humanitarian and development interventions
    - recognize the financial management issues involved in humanitarian and development interventions
    - identify how and to what extent a proposed project can be evaluated
    2. Skills: By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
    - manage (initially under supervision) practical interventions from conceptualization to evaluation
    - prepare a budget
    - prepare a funding request
    - prepare a project proposal
  • Teaching and methodology

    The study-unit aims to:
    - make students aware of the full range of practical and professional constraints that must be tackled in any humanitarian or development intervention.
    - provide students with a set of practical skills to tackle such issues
    - ensure that students have the necessary set of skills to be "deployable" directly in field missions.
  • Assessment methods and criteria

    Portfolio: 100% weight, resit availability present
  • Required reading

    This unit is less oriented towards the analytical readings and more towards gaining insights from practitioners, their experiences and lessons they have learnt. The guest lecturers are also supposed to suggest readings for their individual lectures.
    However, for mainly illustrative purposes, these are the types of readings that will be assigned (recommended readings):
    Christine Williamson "Personnel management and security" Humanitarian Exchange Magazine Issue 47 June 2010
    Peter Salama The Psychological Health of Relief Workers: Some Practical Suggestions Humanitarian Exchange Magazine Issue 15 November 1999
    David Loquercio, Mark Hammersley and Ben Emmens "Understanding and addressing staff turnover in humanitarian agencies" Humanitarian Practice Network Paper No. 55 July 2006
    European Commission 2005 ECHO Manual, Project Cycle management.

Last updated: 15 January 2018

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