Counting humanitarian aid delivered through the military


The last decade has seen an increased prevalence and normalised involvement of military actors in the delivery of humanitarian assistance. Recent discussion and debates around military involvement have typically focused on matters of principle or practical questions of coordinating, regulating or limiting military involvement in humanitarian aid.

Unlike traditional humanitarian aid delivered by civilian agencies, we seldom hear of the financial costs of military involvement in humanitarian aid delivery. This is an area we hope to shed more light on in future, but currently, it remains an opaque, sometimes secretive and almost always poorly accounted for component of humanitarian action.

This briefing collates and summarises existing information on financial investments in humanitarian assistance via international military actors and outlines the difficulties in apportioning values to the financial cost of humanitarian assistance delivered through the military.

The briefing was produced by our Global Humanitarian Assistance (GHA) programme and can be accessed here.