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Localization of disaster aid slow in the Philippines—HHI study

Harvard Univ.
Publication date

A study by the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative (HHI) has found a reliance on international actors within the disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation (CCA) system in the Philippines. A continued reliance on international aid agencies means the Philippines is not realizing its full potential for utilizing local organizations to bolster the country’s DRR and CCA system, HHI researchers warned. “Local community-based organizations (CBOs) and national non-governmental organizations (NGOs) as well as national and local government units are best positioned to respond to disasters. Our research points to the continued central networked role international aid agencies play in the Philippine disaster system,” said HHI Resilient Communities program director Vincenzo Bollettino in a statement.

“Further progress is needed to ensure that local agencies are empowered to respond without international support,” he added. The study, published on 29 October 2020, involved face-to-face and online surveys from 2017 to 2019 and a network mapping among 501 international and local organizations with disaster and climaterelated projects in the Philippines.

The study participants were NGOs, CBOs or people’s organizations (POs), local government units (LGUs), government agencies, schools or research institutions, faith-based organizations, private organizations or companies, and affiliates of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.