Home The CentreEvents COVID-19 and Localisation: Shifting the power, or shifting the risk?

This is the first session of the No Safe Space: Crisis Response in COVID-19 online forum series presented by the Centre for Humanitarian LeadershipACFID and HAG, and co-hosted by PIANGO, Adeso and SEJAJAR (the Pujiono Centre, Oxfam Indonesia and MDMC). 

Given restrictions on travel and mobility, local and national humanitarian actors are on the frontline of the COVID-19 response, operating in areas where risks are highest. During this response there has been a necessary transfer of implementation responsibility to local and national actors, in contrast to the usual ‘surge’ of international staff in a crisis response. However, the question remains whether ownershipleadership and resources have also been transferred to local and national actors, or if only a delegation of responsibility and risk has occurred.  

This session will address:

  1. What are the operational challenges faced by local civil society organisations, how are they adapting their operations due to COVID-19, and how can the international community support them? 
  2. Remote management or Localised Action? How is COVID-19 impacting the localisation agenda? 
  3. What are the opportunities and challenges for locally led response in the COVID-19 context? 
  4. What are the emerging humanitarian leadership needs due to COVID-19?

This panel discussion will explore whether the COVID-19 pandemic has ‘fast-tracked’ the localisation agenda, examine if the move towards localisation during this period has been positive, and consider how the humanitarian community might change for the better during, and beyond the COVID-19 response.


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