DEMAC Publications

NEW DEMAC REPORT: “Creating Opportunities To Work With Diasporas In Humanitarian Settings”

Food Security Project Syria © DOZ e. V.

While the contribution of diasporas to development has been widely researched, their input into the humanitarian sphere remains underexplored. This study reviews the work of six Diaspora organisations (DOs) in Syria and Somalia, when emergency and early recovery responses are needed as a result of droughts, terror attacks or active conflict. It provides a critical analysis and a case study approach to advance the understanding of Diaspora organisations’ contributions in humanitarian settings.

Analysts and media commentators have increased the coverage of Diaspora’s humanitarian actions in recent years, most notably during the Syrian conflict. The work of DOs has not been as widely explored across other crisis settings or outside of a group of large DOs. This research started by asking how small- and medium-scale DOs add value in remote and restricted settings where mainstream humanitarian actors face challenges of access, local ownership and sustainability. It concludes on areas of complementarity between DOs and the traditional humanitarian sector, outlining their strengths and weaknesses, achievements and areas where they should be supported.

The complexities of operating in emergency humanitarian settings in countries such as Nigeria, Somalia and Syria apply to all organisations – whether international or diaspora. DOs have to negotiate their access to funding and their implementation capacity just like traditional actors. They operate in a common humanitarian aid ecosystem, are confronted with similar challenges, and use alternative modes of intervention that can also act as sources for best practices. Yet this study reveals that traditional humanitarian actors and diasporic actors rarely interact to improve the results of humanitarian aid across emergency settings. The lack of knowledge of each other’s work, capacity and potential contributions weaken the aid ecosystem and the response. This study is a step towards bridging this gap.

Read the DEMAC Report

DEMAC Report: Diaspora Drought Response - Somaliland and Puntland

This report provides findings on the Somali diaspora response to the regional drought/crisis that affected Somaliland and Puntland in early 2016. The report includes a broad mapping exercise and discussion of responses from the European diaspora, as well as an overview and some more detailed case studies of actual responses in Somaliland and Puntland.
Diaspora Drought Response - Somaliland and Puntland

DEMAC Phase I report and Checklist

DEMAC Report "Diaspora Humanitarianism: Findings of the Diaspora Emergency Action and Coordination Project" Published December 2016

Checklist: "Engaging Diasporas for Emergency Action and Coordination" Published December 2016

DEMAC Conference Report

DEMAC Report "A Missing Link? Diaspora's Place In An Enhanced International Humanitarian System" published in October 2016

DEMAC Research Reports

DEMAC Report "Diaspora Humanitarianism - Transnational Ways of Working" published in March 2016

World Humanitarian Summit Recommendations by Somali, Sierra Leonean and Syrian diaspora-based humanitarian organisations published in July 2015

DEMAC Workshop Reports

Copenhagen Workshop, February 2016, Report
London Workshop, April 2016, Report
Berlin Workshop, June 2016, Report

DEMAC Community Events Reports

First Somali Community Event
Second Somali Community Event
First Sierra Leone Community Event
Second Sierra Leone Community Event
First Syria Community Event
First Syria Community Event, Arabic


Pictures of DEMAC workshops, conferences and events