Within 5 minutes of the start of the workshop I was feeling gloomy. Not because the workshop wasn’t fantastic but because we had started talking about the findings from the Listening Projects’ vital listening exercises that they have carried out in 20 countries since 2005. As one participant put it “I heard all this 20 years ago” – it seems some things haven’t changed. We may have improved the speed of our humanitarian responses and the services we deliver may be of better quality with better standards, but local people still feel they are not listened to or understood, local organisations are still at the beck and call of their international funders and international programmes are still perceived as ‘pre-packaged’. Despite recognising these as issues, will we ever do something to address them? Perhaps. I think international organsations now realise that as well as talking to local people to find out their views, it’s also a good idea to give feedback on what you’ve heard, whether something can be done or not. But if our blank faces are anything to go by when faced with the question of what to do about the prolific use of expensive ex-patriate consultants when there are adequately qualified local staff available, then perhaps some issues are harder to address. But thank goodness for people like The Listening Project who strive to bring these issues to the fore.