Image by Russell Watkins / Department for International Development
  • Report
  • 19 July 2012

Global Humanitarian Assistance Report 2012

"The global response to humanitarian crises is the collective output of a complex ecosystem of communities, organisations and national and international governments, each facing a range of choices about how, where, when and how much they contribute to meet humanitarian need."

The GHA Report 2012 uses the latest data to present the most comprehensive assessment of the international humanitarian financing response. It considers how this response has measured up to the scale of global humanitarian crises and reflects on the timeliness, proportionality, and phasing of investments. Chapters on humanitarian funding (the donors, recipients and channels of delivery), the forces which shape humanitarian need, and the investments needed to tackle vulnerability are presented, revealing the complexity of humanitarian response.

In 2010 major natural disasters in Haiti and Pakistan had wide-ranging effects on the collective humanitarian response: driving up overall international spending by 23% over the previous year; drawing in new government and private donors; and involving military actors in responses on a huge; scale. These crises also shifted historic geographical concentrations of humanitarian spending, exacerbating the gap in unmet financing for a number of other countries.

In 2011 global humanitarian needs were smaller in scale, with the UN’s consolidated humanitarian appeal requesting US$8.9 billion, 21% less in financing, to meet the humanitarian needs of 62 million people, compared with US$11.3 billion requested to meet the needs of 74 million people in 2010. The overall international humanitarian financing response fell back by 9%, from US$18.8 billion in 2010 to US$17.1 billion in 2011. But despite the reduction in needs in the UN’s humanitarian appeals, the gap in unmet financing widened to levels not seen in ten years.

Humanitarian crises not only occur in parts of the world where many people are already poor: they deepen poverty and prevent people from escaping from it. Building resilience to shock and disaster risk therefore is not only the concern of affected communities and humanitarians; it is of fundamental importance in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and in the elimination of absolute poverty.

You can read blogs about GHA Report 2012 from Ed Cairns (Senior Policy Adviser at Oxfam GB) and Peter Walker (Director of Feinstein International Centre).

You can also access:

– Chapter-by-chapter data available for download here.

Chapter 1 – Humanitarian response to crises

Chapter 2 – Forces shaping humanitarian need

Chapter 3 – Investments to tackle vulnerability

GHA 2012 – Reference tables

– The infographics and images from the report on the Development Initiatives Flickr site here.

GHA 2012 report infographics

GHA 2012 report images


Download the full report