This website is initiated by Tony Vaux, a consultant working in the field of conflict analysis, humanitarian policy and human security. The purpose is to explore the following concepts:
- Human Security as the primary goal of humanitarian and development aid
- Integration of Conflict Analysis into development policy
- Accountability and Transparency in humanitarian response
The central concept is Human Security. My experience suggests that this is a better focus for international concern than ‘poverty reduction’ or ‘development’. The other concepts are closely linked to it. A major threat to human security comes from violence, conflict and war. Very often these threats reflect the same weaknesses that cause poverty and under-development. Hence it is important to develop a holistic understanding through conflict analysis. If people are to achieve higher levels of security they must have a greater say in the processes that affect them, including aid. Much of my work on conflict analysis suggests that poor people have the greatest interest in ending conflict, and if their voice had more influence there would be more pressure to stop conflict.
I hope that this website will be of interest to others who are grappling to make sense of Western responsibility in relation to human suffering. What should we be most concerned about? How can we remain true to our purpose in the complexities of conflict? How do we best respond to the aspirations of the people we want to help?
In time I hope the website will become interactive. At this stage I am putting out my own ideas and inviting comment.