Delivering the goods: rethinking humanitarian logistics

FMR 18
September 2003

In this issue of Forced Migration Review the crucial role of humanitarian logistics is discussed in the voices of logisticians who have been part of practically every major relief effort over the past decade. The perspective of the logistician is a strategic and central component to the planning of effective relief efforts. The articles in this issue highlight the multidimensional challenges facing humanitarian logisticians as well as their ingenuity and commitment as they rise to meet the challenges.

Contents

Anisya Thomas
Lars Gustavsson

Logistics and supply chain management underpin responses to humanitarian crises.

John Rickard

As a logistician, have you ever first learned of a new project when the purchase requisitions appeared on your desk? Or received a vehicle request 20 minutes before it was urgently required?

Donald Chaikin

Effective programmes require efficient support functions. Logistics is a key support function and needs to be incorporated into planning and management decisions from inception to close-down.

David B Kaatrud, Ramina Samii and Luk N Van Wassenhove

Typically, humanitarian agencies tend to underestimate the importance of logistics.

Bernard Chomilier, Ramina Samii and Luk N Van Wassenhove

The Gujarat earthquake was a watershed for IFRC and more specifically for its Logistics and Resource Mobilisation Department. It was the first time that all IFRC's preparedness tools, mechanisms and practices, developed to better manage emergency supply chains, had come together.

Peter Scott-Bowden

There are two distinct categories of emergencies - those for which you are prepared and others for which you are not.

Paul Molinaro and Sandi Blanchet

For the last eighteen months in Afghanistan, UNICEF has been involved in one of the largest education operations in the history of the organization.

George Fenton

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is one of the most inhospitable, insecure and operationally complex countries of the world in which to deliver humanitarian relief.

Margaret Vikki and Erling Bratheim

Uganda's 17-year civil conflict entered a new phase in mid 2002 when the Ugandan army launched Operation Iron Fist and entered southern Sudan with the objective of finally wiping out the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA).

Jon Bennett

The recent protracted crisis in southern Africa stretched the ingenuity and capacity of the international community.

H Wally Lee and Marc Zbinden

Logistics links all the stakeholders in the relief delivery process.

Guy Hovey and Diana Landsman

Complex emergencies and NGO response mechanisms entail rapid deployment of staff and resources, immediate recruitment and accelerated distribution of relief supplies.

General articles

Paul O'Brien

Afghanistan may be 'the war before' but it remains a critical test case for post-11 September US foreign policy.

Hashim Abuzeid, Naomi Lockwood, Rashida Abdel Mutalib and Tony Wrightson

Thousands of Eritreans, many of them second- or third-generation exiles, live in refugee camps in the northeast of Sudan. Millions of southern Sudanese have fled to the north where IDP settlements are scattered around urban outskirts.

Bashir Osmat, Michael Kagan and Samira Trad

The US decision to halt refugee resettlement following the 11 September 2001 attacks has left Iraqi refugees in Lebanon in limbo.

Fatemeh Keyhanlou, Hani Mansourian and Negar Azimi

Legal systems are notoriously refugee-unfriendly. Are there alternative means of adjudicating refugees' legal disputes?

Stephen Castles, Heaven Crawley and Sean Loughna

Most asylum seekers in Europe come from states affected by high levels of violence, oppression and conflict.

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Opinions in FMR do not necessarily reflect the views of the Editors, the Refugee Studies Centre or the University of Oxford.
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