HPG - Collaborative Advocacy between Humanitarian and Human Rights Actors: Opportunities and Challenges

There is general acknowledgement among humanitarians that addressing the complex protection threats against civilians affected by armed conflict requires a holistic, multidisciplinary response from a range of international actors. Current policy discussions on the humanitarian–development–peace nexus and the United Nations Secretary-General’s ‘Call to Action for Human Rights’ have pushed the concept of more integrated or collaborative approaches back up the aid agenda. But questions are also being raised regarding how to manage the long-standing risks of and challenges to this more collaborative approach.

This briefing note focuses specifically on current collaboration practices between international (United Nations and civil society) humanitarian and human rights actors engaged in advocacy to secure better protection of conflict-affected civilians. It outlines in brief some positive examples and sets out some of the key barriers to and risks of closer collaboration and possible mitigating strategies. Finally, it highlights some key opportunities to enable greater collaboration between international humanitarian and human rights actors.