Critical analysis of the latest standard and certification initiatives in the humanitarian sector: The Core Humanitarian Standard and the SCHR’s Revised Certification Model

Following the Joint Standards Initiative (JSI), a first draft of the Core Humanitarian Standard (CHS) has been disseminated throughout the international humanitarian community for consultation until 31 March 2014. As the Sphere project has withdrawn from the initiative, HAP and People in Aid are steering the development of the CHS with the objective that it will replace the 2010 HAP Standard in Accountability and Quality Management and People in Aid’s Code of Good Practice.

In addition, the Steering Committee for Humanitarian Response’s certification project has also just published the revised version of its certification model for the humanitarian sector. In parallel, this model is also being tested in Ethiopia, Pakistan, the Philippines and Lebanon. As for the CHS, feedback on this revised model is being gathered until 31 March 2014.

Following the previous discussions of these initiatives in France, and in particular the workshop of 20 September 2013 in Paris, Groupe URD and Coordination Sud called a meeting of the organisations on 10 March 2014 to analyse these two new proposals in detail and produce a critical analysis and recommendations for HAP and People in Aid about the CHS and for the SCHR about the Certification Model.

This report formalises the main points made during the workshop and is addressed to the two initiatives – the Core Humanitarian Standard (HAP and People in Aid) and the SCHR’s Certification project – as part of an ongoing discussion about quality in aid. 

The participants observe that many of the comments made in September 2013 and addressed to the SCHR have been taken into account by those in charge of the project but that uncertainties, important shortcomings and major risks remain.

Publication date: 
April, 2014