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Leadership of protection in the humanitarian sector

Briefing/policy paper

Written by Gemma Davies, Mark Bowden

Image credit:Jessica Rennoldson Image license:CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Humanitarian leaders are critical to setting and advancing strategies that help reduce protection risks for crisis-affected people.

They are key to contributing to cultures that support protection within the institutions and organisations that they lead. However, within the humanitarian system, protection is poorly understood. It lacks institutional and political support. In the absence of leadership that promotes protection as central to humanitarian action, there is a lack of commitment to and prioritisation of protection.

This paper focuses on challenges, barriers and enabling factors involved in strengthening humanitarian leadership of protection as a central tenet of humanitarian action. It will focus on the role of leadership in reducing protection risks to civilians.