Shaping the future: Our strategy for research and innovation in humanitarian response.

A global organisation that finds solutions to complex humanitarian problems through research and innovation..
Our purpose is clear: we work in partnership with a global community of humanitarian actors, researchers and innovators to improve the quality of humanitarian action and deliver better outcomes for people affected by crises.
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In 2014, the initial public health response to the Ebola epidemic in West Africa failed to consider context-specific social, political and cultural factors, with devastating consequences. Anthropologists responded by working closely with governments and humanitarian agencies to develop culturally sensitive responses.

Between 2014 and 2017, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the Institute of Development Studies, together with partners at Njala University Sierra Leone and the Universities of Sussex and Exeter trialled the Ebola Response Anthropology Platform (ERAP), an online resource for outbreak control teams to receive real-time, evidence-based advice from anthropologists and other social scientists.

ERAP informed the UK government’s strategic response to the Ebola outbreak as well as global health policy and practice. It was cited in World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines on communicating risk in public health practices. Crucially, it has also helped to shape recent infectious disease responses, such as the 2018 Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Ebola response and the COVID-19 response, and in 2016 was awarded the Celebrating International Impact Award by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council.

R2HC captures detailed case studies through a process that triangulates and validates evidence on uptake and impact. The case study methodology and full version of this summary case study including references are available on request. Outputs and resources from this study are available on the project page

View Impact Case Study Explore all impact case studies

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