Emergency aid is often planned as a temporary life-saving intervention. These days, however, many crises are long-term and aid is often provided for decades. In such circumstances, people, governments and societies learn and develop in ways rarely anticipated by those who provide the aid, and by those affected by it, but which is essential to understand if aid is to be effective.
In this joint book launch, Susanne Jaspars and Bram Jansen illustrate the long-term effects of aid practices from two different dimensions: long-term food aid in Sudan, and a long-term refugee camp in Kenya.
Susanne Jaspars, in her book Food Aid in Sudan, examines fifty years of food aid in Sudan. She finds that although the objectives of food aid have proliferated, they rarely had their intended effect. Long-term food aid did, however, benefit the Sudan government and its closely-alligned private sector. Crisis-affected populations themselves have received little food assistance and have been left to become resilient to permanent emergency.
In his book Kakuma Refugee Camp, Bran Jansen examines the evolution of this camp since the late 1980s, its transformation into an ‘accidental city’ and the everyday lives of the people who live there. The book explores the lives of camp dwellers as characterized by a humanitarian urbanism, in which the permanent uncertainties of exile are married with the everyday contours of life, coping and organisation in a context of elaborate humanitarian governance.
This event is part of the Humanitarian Studies Conference 27–29 August 2018, The Hague, The Netherlands