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The role of the private sector in preparing for humanitarian operations - A multiple-case study including DP-DHL, MasterCard and Cisco

Hult, Amanda LU and Persson Segell, Lovisa LU (2017) VBR920 20171
Division of Risk Management and Societal Safety
Risk Management and Safety Engineering (M.Sc.Eng.)
Division of Risk Management and Societal Safety
Abstract
There are many actors included in the humanitarian system, such as NGOs, UN humanitarian agencies and governments. However, a gap in the humanitarian system can be identified where the traditional actors lack resources, which provides an opportunity for the private sector to be more involved, particularly in preparing for humanitarian operations. Therefore, in this research, a multiple-case study has been performed with three private businesses; DP-DHL, MasterCard and Cisco, with the purpose to understand the present role of the private sector in preparing for humanitarian operations and the possibility to improve this role.

Both benefits and some challenges have been revealed related to the involvement of the private sector. An... (More)
There are many actors included in the humanitarian system, such as NGOs, UN humanitarian agencies and governments. However, a gap in the humanitarian system can be identified where the traditional actors lack resources, which provides an opportunity for the private sector to be more involved, particularly in preparing for humanitarian operations. Therefore, in this research, a multiple-case study has been performed with three private businesses; DP-DHL, MasterCard and Cisco, with the purpose to understand the present role of the private sector in preparing for humanitarian operations and the possibility to improve this role.

Both benefits and some challenges have been revealed related to the involvement of the private sector. An understanding of their role has been obtained where it has been found that there are many possibilities for the private sector to engage in preparing for humanitarian operations. The outcomes of the engagements studied in this research imply that successful initiatives are achievable and factors of success have been formulated. These can indicate what areas should be invested in to achieve successful initiatives in the future. (Less)
Popular Abstract
The private sector can play an important role in making humanitarian operations more effective by engaging in preparedness activities. Findings in this research indicate that successful initiatives are achievable and factors of success have been identified.

More effective disaster preparedness and response in humanitarian operations are needed today due to changing conditions for disasters, such as new disaster risks occurring and a growing vulnerability to these risks. Expertise, knowledge and innovation which traditional actors might lack can be found within the private sector. which can be an opportunity for them to be more involved in humanitarian operations. This research focuses on understanding the private sector’s role in... (More)
The private sector can play an important role in making humanitarian operations more effective by engaging in preparedness activities. Findings in this research indicate that successful initiatives are achievable and factors of success have been identified.

More effective disaster preparedness and response in humanitarian operations are needed today due to changing conditions for disasters, such as new disaster risks occurring and a growing vulnerability to these risks. Expertise, knowledge and innovation which traditional actors might lack can be found within the private sector. which can be an opportunity for them to be more involved in humanitarian operations. This research focuses on understanding the private sector’s role in preparing for humanitarian operations, both the present- and the future role. This was achieved by performing a multiple-case study including conducting interviews and studying documents from private businesses engaging in this area.

In the research, it was found that there are many possibilities for private sector engagement, mainly related to their area of business. Successful initiatives can be achieved, especially by engaging in partnerships with humanitarian organisations and by doing that, challenges that have been discussed in other literature can be overcome. Challenges related to private sector engagement are not general but are dependent on the company’s engagement and contribution area. Companies can be motivated to engage in humanitarian operations due to external factors such as CSR and internal factors such as a motivated staff. From the studied cases, several factors of success have been observed for successful outcomes of private sector initiatives, such as partnerships, collaboration with other actors, flexibility within initiatives and well-functioning follow-up activities to ensure having a long-term impact and improving the initiatives. In addition, to achieve successful outcomes, each company engaging in initiatives related to humanitarian operations should consider their own possibilities and resources.

The researchers suggest that the private sector should be open to expanding their engagement within the area of humanitarian operations. There is still much that can be done within this area and there is room for increasing private sector engagement and further investments can be made. Suggestions about how this can be made is presented in the research. It is the researchers wish that this research can inform private actors as well as other actors about how this can be achieved. In addition, the research area is relatively unexplored and therefore this research can inspire others to continue studying this area. (Less)
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author
Hult, Amanda LU and Persson Segell, Lovisa LU
supervisor
organization
course
VBR920 20171
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Disaster, risk, DRR, preparedness, private sector, humanitarian system, humanitarian operations, case study, partnership
report number
5042
other publication id
ISRN: LUTVDG/TVRH--5042--SE
language
English
id
8923869
date added to LUP
2017-09-11 13:47:54
date last changed
2020-12-03 14:26:12
@misc{8923869,
  abstract     = {There are many actors included in the humanitarian system, such as NGOs, UN humanitarian agencies and governments. However, a gap in the humanitarian system can be identified where the traditional actors lack resources, which provides an opportunity for the private sector to be more involved, particularly in preparing for humanitarian operations. Therefore, in this research, a multiple-case study has been performed with three private businesses; DP-DHL, MasterCard and Cisco, with the purpose to understand the present role of the private sector in preparing for humanitarian operations and the possibility to improve this role.

Both benefits and some challenges have been revealed related to the involvement of the private sector. An understanding of their role has been obtained where it has been found that there are many possibilities for the private sector to engage in preparing for humanitarian operations. The outcomes of the engagements studied in this research imply that successful initiatives are achievable and factors of success have been formulated. These can indicate what areas should be invested in to achieve successful initiatives in the future.},
  author       = {Hult, Amanda and Persson Segell, Lovisa},
  keyword      = {Disaster,risk,DRR,preparedness,private sector,humanitarian system,humanitarian operations,case study,partnership},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {The role of the private sector in preparing for humanitarian operations - A multiple-case study including DP-DHL, MasterCard and Cisco},
  year         = {2017},
}