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Patrick Saez

Senior Research Fellow and Policy Lead

  • Humanitarian Policy Group
Portrait of Patrick Saez

Patrick Saez is a Senior Research Fellow and the policy lead in the Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG). His research focuses on the performance of the humanitarian system and efforts to reform its governance and financing. As policy lead, Saez oversees HPG’s efforts to turn research into practice.

Prior to joining ODI, he served as a Senior Humanitarian Adviser in the UK Government, providing thought leadership on a range of humanitarian policy and operational issues, including

the protection of civilians and forced displacement, coordination in the humanitarian system, cash transfers in crises, and risk-based financing. He co-wrote the UK’s Strategy on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict and wrote the latest UK Humanitarian Reform Policy.

He was DFID’s lead adviser on the Syria crisis from 2011 to 2015 and was also responsible for DFID’s £135m core humanitarian funding to the UN, and oversaw DFID’s engagement with key UN, Red Cross, and other non-governmental humanitarian organisations. He also led the UK’s initial response to the crisis in Venezuela and neighbouring countries.

Saez was most recently seconded as a Senior Policy Fellow to the Center for Global Development, where he co-led the three-year research programme ‘Rethinking Humanitarian Reform: Towards Demand-Driven’, an influential body of work that analysed structures of power and incentives that hinder reforms of the humanitarian system, and proposed actionable ideas to overcome them.

He previously worked with the International Committee of the Red Cross where he developed ICRC’s policy on the protection of civilians and served in various roles in Colombia, Kosovo and Indonesia. He had previously worked with humanitarian NGOs in the Balkans, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.