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Dignity in displacement: case studies from Afghanistan, Colombia, the Philippines and South Sudan

Working paper

Written by Kerrie Holloway

Working paper

Dignity is evoked specifically in many humanitarian sectors – including food and cash-based aid, livelihoods, education, health and hygiene, shelter, protection and psychosocial support. But despite a strong emphasis on dignity within the policies and rhetoric of the international humanitarian system, there is a dearth of literature analysing whether, and in what ways, humanitarian action upholds and furthers, or indeed detracts from and undermines, the dignity of crisis-affected people, particularly in displacement responses. 

This series, focusing on displacement in Afghanistan, Colombia, the Philippines and South Sudan, contributes four contextual examples of what dignity in displacement means. Each case study, written by a local researcher, explores the following questions:

  • How is dignity understood in the local context?
  • How is dignity perceived differently by different people (e.g. men, women, youth, elderly, minority groups)?
  • How have people experienced the international and local aid response in their location? Are there differences in the way that dignity is upheld in local or international aid responses?
  • Are there good or bad practice examples of how organisations try to uphold dignity in these responses?