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Call for Papers: 2021 World Conference on Humanitarian Studies

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Conference Dates: 3-5 November 2021
Place: Hybrid – Paris, France and Online

Deadline for papers: 1 September 2021

The call for papers has opened for IHSA's World Conference on Humanitarian Studies, scheduled to take place in November 2021. Among the panels currently accepting paper proposals, is The Politics of Numbers: Measuring, Monitoring and Reporting in Humanitarian Crises. 

2021 World Conference on Humanitarian Studies - New realities of politics and humanitarianism: Between solidarity and abandonment

The global humanitarian system increasingly centres data-driven estimates of humanitarian needs, and evidence-based analyses of the frequency and intensity of protection threats and rights abuses in characterising, prioritising and responding to contemporary humanitarian crises. Increasingly, however, attention is being paid to the political nature of the humanitarian data pipeline, including (but not limited to), the political construction of measures and key indicators and the power relations embedded within the design process; political conditions which affect data collection, reliability and gaps; political dimensions of data analysis, interpretation, and communication; and the political economy of the acceptance or rejection of such figures. This panel invites academic and practitioner papers that explore the political dimensions of humanitarian data, as feature in, inter alia, methodologies, tools and systems for estimating needs; monitoring of protection threats and abuses in humanitarian crises; leveraging such data in pursuit of accountability and compliance with International Humanitarian Law; and the ethical, security and power considerations data collection and dissemination of this kind raise.

Humanitarian practitioners and scholars are welcome to submit abstracts (max 200 words) on this theme by 1 September. 

Submit online at  or contact Caitriona Dowd ( for further information.


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