Alliance partners are currently implementing initiatives towards the four key areas of the Alliance. Together, their work will bring about a fundamental shift in the way that international and local actors interact with each other in response to urban humanitarian crises.

Below are examples of on-going work being led by Alliance partners.

Key Area: Tailoring humanitarian response to the urban context by developing shared assessment and profiling tools, promoting joint analysis, and adapting coordination mechanisms.

There are currently seven initiatives being led by Alliance partners under this key area. Initiatives include: shared modelling, a shared online reference database and knowledge platform, and development of various shared tools to support local authorities and communities. Through joint efforts, partners are adapting coordination in order to develop impactful and efficient interventions in humanitarian response in the urban sphere.

Partners include (but are not limited to) Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC), Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), Joint Development Migration Initiative (JDMI), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS),  Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance (ALNAP), DFID, the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), World Vision International (WVI) and the International Rescue Committee (IRC). Below are examples of such initiatives:

International Rescue Committee - In partnership with the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) and World Vision, the IRC is leading an initiative to develop programming guidance for humanitarian response in urban settings in order to improve the effectiveness of the sector and contribute to the evidence base of appropriate responses to urban humanitarian crises. This work is part of the DFID Urban Crises Program, which involves the IRC and IIED.


Visit IRC website.

Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance (ALNAP) – ALNAP’s Urban Community of Practice is a space for urban practitioners to share knowledge and connect with other practitioners, share best practices, share data and evidence, as well as on-going work and initiatives in the urban field.


Visit ALNAP website.

Key Area: Developing or working with existing global, regional and national rosters to facilitate the deployment of urban leaders, managers and technical experts.

There are currently 13 initiatives under this key area led by Alliance partners. Initiatives include, hosting and managing an urban professional roster, technical and urban professional capacity support and training, access to built-environments, strengthening of strategic and technical support for urban planning services as part of emergency response to at risk cities, developing an Urban Competency Framework to ensure humanitarian staff are better equipped to work and engage in urban crises and improve the way organisations and their partners respond in urban contexts, and training young people and develop university hubs and partnerships.

Partners include (but are not limited to), CANADEM, United Kingdom Built Environment Advisory Group (UK BEAG), ISOCARP, RedR, Save the Children, European Commission – Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) and IDMC. Below is an example of an initiative under this key area:

RedR UK is an international humanitarian NGO which supports aid organisations and other humanitarian actors across the world by developing skills and providing expertise. RedR ensures that those living and working in disaster prone countries have the skills they need to effectively prepare for and respond to natural and manmade disasters.

One of RedR’s key strategic goals is to enhance the quality of response to urban emergencies. Through their Ready to Respond programme, RedR has developed a suite of urban courses aimed at building urban humanitarian capacity. This includes urban-specific training on WASH, shelter, & humanitarian essentials. RedR also works to build urban capacity through KnowledgePoint, an online technical support service for humanitarians. Through these activities, RedR aims to ensure that a growing number of both humanitarian and private sector individuals are better prepared to respond to future urban emergencies.


Visit RedR website.

The Global Alliance for Urban Crises is aiming to develop and connect global, regional and national rosters of urban and local government experts specializing in humanitarian crisis response and resilience building. One of the key rosters is maintained and hosted by CANADEM. CANADEM is based in Canada and specializes in rostering of development and humanitarian members of international civil service. If you are interested in joining please click here.

CANADEM's logo

Visit CANADEM website.

Key Area: Building the evidence base on the specific characteristics of protracted displacement in urban areas, and contributing to the design of appropriate and cost-effective responses, with particular regard to protection of vulnerable people, shelter, basic services and infrastructure.

There are 33 initiatives led by Alliance partners under this key area. Initiatives include, original research on urban humanitarian systems, targeting efforts such as developing operational guidelines on targeting, desk and literature review of targeting efforts, projects to improve urban responses through area-based methodologies and tools, improving comprehensive use of targeting, city and neighbourhood profiling, developing a well-being and adjustment index to measure progress towards self-reliance, targeting and measuring cash-based intervention, Protection Management Information (PIM), lessons learned evaluations, GIS imagery and mapping, among other evidence based initiatives.

Partners include (but are not limited to), ALNAP, NRC, UNHCR, Joint IDP Profiling Services (JIPS), UNHABITAT, World Food Programme (WFP), Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC), RefugePoint, the International Rescue Committee (IRC), Danish Refugee Council (DRC), REACH, JDMI, IFRC, and IIED. Below is an example of an initiative under this key area:

IIED is leading a three-year programme of research, documentation of past experiences, development of tools and guidelines, and shared learning across humanitarian actors and other urban stakeholders. 


Visit IIED website.

Key Area: Ensuring that initiatives focused on building urban resilience incorporate components on resilient response and recovery from crises, and that they leverage greatest impact in cities most at risk of humanitarian emergencies.

There are 11 initiative led by Alliance partners under this key area. Initiatives include building resilience for local response, building networks and coalitions for resilient cities, and on-going work on comprehensive risk and resilient response.

Partners include (but are not limited to), local municipalities, UN-HABITAT, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) and The Government of the Dominican Republic. Below is an example of an initiative under this key area:

HABITAT CRPP - The City Resilience Profiling Programme (CRPP) focuses on providing national and local governments with tools for measuring and increasing resilience to multi-hazard impacts, including those associated with climate change.


Habitat CRPP

Visit Habitat CRPP website.