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Research on humanitarian policy

The Research Council is establishing a new research programme that will focus on humanitarian policy. The programme will issue its first call for proposals in 2011, with a deadline in the autumn.

The programme is being established as a follow-up to the white paper on humanitarian policy (Report No. 40 (2008-2009) to the Storting: Norway’s Humanitarian Policy), in which the Government sets out its intentions to increase investment in Norwegian and international humanitarian research and to promote the establishment of a dynamic humanitarian research community in Norway.

Foreign Ministry initiative
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is providing the funding for the new research initiative and has asked the Research Council to take on the task of administering the programme. The programme will be organised as a sub-programme under the research programme Norway – A Global Partner (NORGLOBAL). The work programme is due to be completed by July.

Thematic priority areas
“Research under the new humanitarian policy programme will seek primarily to meet knowledge needs in areas of political priority for Norway,” says Øystein Lyngroth, Head of Project at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and member of the planning group for the programme. Key thematic areas include:

- Prevention and crisis preparedness in the context of humanitarian disasters
- Protection of civilians
- Women in war and armed conflict situations
- International humanitarian law and humanitarian principles
- Humanitarian disarmament and armed violence
- Challenges for future international humanitarian assistance, including its organisation.

“The issue of sustainability will not be included in the scope of the work programme at this stage, but research on the impact of humanitarian assistance will be incorporated as an overarching thematic focus,” Mr Lyngroth explains.

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