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Podcast series: constructive deconstruction

Written by Christina Bennett


'Constructive deconstruction: future humanitarian action' is a three-part podcast series where change makers pitch radical new visions to shake up the future of humanitarian aid. 

In each podcast, a panel of experts explores and examines each pitch with real life stories from people on the frontline: both on the giving and receiving end of aid. We then examine what is needed to put the visions into practice to imagine an alternative future for humanitarian action.

The series was borne out of a two-year research project to re-think the humanitarian system. Read the papers that inspired the podcast series, view our design experiment that reimagined humanitarian action from the perspective of its users and revisit our work on remaking humanitarian action for the modern era.

Frequently asked questions

Episode 1: The new humanitarian basics

This episode redefines 'crisis' and the humanitarian role, and pitches a vision of a whole-of-problem crisis response based on humanitarian principles.


  • Christina Bennett, Head of Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG), ODI
  • Marc DuBois, author, former Executive Director of MSF UK
  • Abduraham Sharif, Director of the Somalia NGO Consortium 
  • Nan Buzard, Head of Innovation, ICRC 

Frequently asked questions

Episode 2: Network humanitarianism

This episode examines how technology is disrupting power structures in the humanitarian sector, drawing on real life examples from across the world including the Mediterranean refugee crisis.


  • Christina Bennett, Head of Humanitarian Policy Group, ODI
  • Paul Currion, author and humanitarian consultant
  • Jaz O’Hara, Founder, World Wide Tribe
  • Aimee Ansari, Executive Director, Translators Without Borders

Frequently asked questions

Episode 3: The humanitarian anchor

This episode explores the pitch for a humanitarian social economy based on opportunities for displaced people, and unpacks the potential of cooperatives and community investment funds with insights from Syria.


  • Christina Bennett, Head of Humanitarian Policy Group, ODI
  • Tahir Zaman, author and lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Sussex
  • Nils Carstensen, Local to Global Protection
  • Rouba Mhaissen, economist, activist and development expert