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Debate

Territories: the illusion of identity

Conference-debate on Monday 16 December 2019, 6-8pm in the 1st floor meeting room at MSF, 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès 75019 Paris. Streaming and simultaneous translation into English available.

Can we talk about the specificities of the Middle East, Iran or the Mediterranean without reducing these territories to a culture or religion? The CRASH team invites you to a conference-debate with Jean-François Bayart, a French political scientist who has devoted his work to the sociology of the State and identity illusions.

[Rappel conférence-débat] En attendant le lundi 16 décembre, une vidéo de présentation de Jean-François Bayart pour "Les fondamentalistes de l’identité: laïcisme versus djihadisme" à (re)voir. ► https://t.co/ChzzOdgr8k Streaming de la conférence sur: https://t.co/XlLXqJbO9m
Conférence-débat "Territoires : l’illusion identitaire" avec Jean-François Bayart, lundi 16 décembre de 18h à 20h dans la salle du 1er chez @MSF_france au 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès. Pour regarder la conférence en streaming: FR: https://t.co/XlLXqJbO9m EN: https://t.co/bmdMu4Mwee
Dans cette vidéo de @AlternativesHum, Xavier Plaisancie présente sa thèse sur les représentations du #VIH et leur impact sur le recours aux soins à Homa Bay au Kenya. Un travail pour lequel il a été accompagné par Jean-Hervé Bradol et Marc Le Pape. #AIDS https://t.co/gU18Lu6evI
#Invitation Conférence-débat « Territoires : l’illusion identitaire », lundi 16 décembre 2019 de 18h00 à 20h00 dans la salle du 1er étage chez @MSF_france au 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès, en présence de Jean-François Bayart, politologue français. https://t.co/mZmeUQKGgh
Inside MSF's hospital in Qayyarah, Iraq
Article

The Challenges of Globalization of International Relief and Development

First Published December 1, 1999 - Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly (NVSQ) - Volume 28 Issue 1.

This article begins with a look at the role played by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) since its inception in 1971, and then looks at the challenges facing MSF today. It focuses on the confusion of humanitarian and political roles and on the goals MSF has laid out for itself to address this confusion. Humanitarian aid has become the favored response of governments to political crises, and governments have increasingly turned to NGOs to carry out their policies. In turn, NGOs have become increasingly dependent on governments for financial support. These changes have politicized aid delivery and made it difficult for NGOs to maintain their independence. In addition, as the number of NGOs increases and their activities become more specialized, there are pressures toward institutionalization and bureaucratization. To respond to these challenges, MSF has identified several goals, including maintaining organizational independence and flexibility and avoiding bureaucratization.

Gumuruk, Jonglei State
Article

Ending the Code of Silence on Abductions of Aid Workers

This article discusses the policy of absolute secrecy on abductions adopted by aid organisations. It argues that the information blackout on past and current cases is to a large extent a function of the growing role of private security companies in the aid sector, which promote a ‘pay, don’t say’ policy as a default option, whatever the situation. The article contends that secrecy is as much an impediment to resolving current cases as it is to preventing and managing future ones. It suggests abandoning the policy of strict confidentiality in all circumstances – a policy that is as dangerous as it is easy to apply – in favour of a more nuanced and challenging approach determining how much to publicise ongoing and past cases for each audience, always keeping in mind the interests of current and potential hostages.

Vue de l'intérieur de l'hôpital MSF à Kunduz, après son bombardement, octobre 2015
Article

War Breaks Out: Interpreting Violence on Healthcare in the Early Stage of the South Sudanese Civil War

This article seeks to document and analyse violence affecting the provision of healthcare by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and its intended beneficiaries in the early stage of the current civil war in South Sudan. Most NGO accounts and quantitative studies of violent attacks on healthcare tend to limit interpretation of their prime motives to the violation of international norms and deprivation of access to health services. Instead, we provide a detailed narrative, which contextualises violent incidents affecting healthcare, with regard for the dynamics of conflict in South Sudan as well as MSF’s operational decisions, and which combines and contrasts institutional and academic sources with direct testimonies from local MSF personnel and other residents. This approach offers greater insight not only into the circumstances and logics of violence but also into the concrete ways in which healthcare practices adapt in the face of attacks and how these may reveal and put to the test the reciprocal expectations binding international and local health practitioners in crisis situations.

MSF in Al Dhale and Taiz, Yemen. July 2015
Article

Oases of Humanity and the Realities of War

The rehabilitation of international humanitarian law (IHL) has become a priority for those who think that the horrors of contemporary wars are largely due to the blurring of the distinction between civilians and combatants and for those who think that campaigning for the respect of IHL could result in more civilised wars. Similarly, respect for humanitarian principles is still seen by many as the best tool available to protect the safety of aid workers. In this text, I argue that both assumptions are misled. The distinction between civilians and combatants, a cornerstone of IHL, has been blurred in practice since the late nineteenth century. In addition, humanitarian agencies claiming to be ‘principled’ have been victims of attacks as much as others. History and current practice tell us that neither IHL nor humanitarian principles provide safety or can guide our decisions. Accepting their symbolic value, rather than their unrealised potential to protect and solve operational dilemmas, would free humanitarian agencies from endless speculations.

Ebola outbreak - Bunia
Blog post

Ebola outbreak: a failure in social mobilisation

On August 1st 2018, the Democratic Republic of Congo’s health authorities declared the country’s tenth outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD), this time in North Kivu province.  Just over a year later, this outbreak is still ongoing, with several dozen new cases reported each week. In the space of 12 months, 3000 people contracted the disease and 2000 of them have since died. This latest outbreak can be seen as a failure at two levels: first, it is already the second biggest EVE outbreak ever recorded, and second, two out of three patients have died. What are the reasons for this failure? What operational strategies should we develop in response? 
Interview with Jean-Hervé Bradol, Director of studies at CRASH, by Elba Rahmouni.

CONFERENCES
& DEBATES

Territories: the illusion of identity

2019-12-16 17:00:00 2019-12-16 19:00:00 Europe/Paris Territories: the illusion of identity Conference-debate on Monday 16 December 2019, 6-8pm in the 1st floor meeting room at MSF, 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès 75019 Paris. Streaming and simultaneous translation into English available. Can we talk about the specificities of the Middle East, Iran or the Mediterranean without reducing these territories to a culture or religion? The CRASH team invites you to a conference-debate with Jean-François Bayart, a French political scientist who has devoted his work to the sociology of the State and identity illusions. 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès 75019 Paris France MSF CRASH

Conference-debate on Monday 16 December 2019, 6-8pm in the 1st floor meeting room at MSF, 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès 75019 Paris. Streaming and simultaneous translation into English available.

Can we talk about the specificities of the Middle East, Iran or the Mediterranean without reducing these territories to a culture or religion? The CRASH team invites you to a conference-debate with Jean-François Bayart, a French political scientist who has devoted his work to the sociology of the State and identity illusions.

Grande Synthe new camp : La Linière, March 2016
Debate

Screening - debate / La Ville Monde

Michaël Neuman

Screening - debate "La Ville Monde" on Thursday 7th of November 2019, from 6.30pm to 8.30pm, in MSF's new premises at 14-34 avenue Jean Jaurès 75019 Paris.

Médecins Sans Frontières and Crash are pleased to invite you to a screening, followed by a debate, of the documentary film  "La Ville Monde" (52', subtitled in English), directed by Antarès Bassis and produced by Les films du Balibari. The film, of which MSF is a partner, traces the trajectory of the La Linière camp in Grande-Synthe from its opening in March 2016 to the fire that destroyed it in April 2017.

View all Conferences & Debates

Publications

Inside MSF's hospital in Qayyarah, Iraq
Article

The Challenges of Globalization of International Relief and Development

First Published December 1, 1999 - Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly (NVSQ) - Volume 28 Issue 1.

This article begins with a look at the role played by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) since its inception in 1971, and then looks at the challenges facing MSF today. It focuses on the confusion of humanitarian and political roles and on the goals MSF has laid out for itself to address this confusion. Humanitarian aid has become the favored response of governments to political crises, and governments have increasingly turned to NGOs to carry out their policies. In turn, NGOs have become increasingly dependent on governments for financial support. These changes have politicized aid delivery and made it difficult for NGOs to maintain their independence. In addition, as the number of NGOs increases and their activities become more specialized, there are pressures toward institutionalization and bureaucratization. To respond to these challenges, MSF has identified several goals, including maintaining organizational independence and flexibility and avoiding bureaucratization.

Gumuruk, Jonglei State
Article

Ending the Code of Silence on Abductions of Aid Workers

This article discusses the policy of absolute secrecy on abductions adopted by aid organisations. It argues that the information blackout on past and current cases is to a large extent a function of the growing role of private security companies in the aid sector, which promote a ‘pay, don’t say’ policy as a default option, whatever the situation. The article contends that secrecy is as much an impediment to resolving current cases as it is to preventing and managing future ones. It suggests abandoning the policy of strict confidentiality in all circumstances – a policy that is as dangerous as it is easy to apply – in favour of a more nuanced and challenging approach determining how much to publicise ongoing and past cases for each audience, always keeping in mind the interests of current and potential hostages.

Vue de l'intérieur de l'hôpital MSF à Kunduz, après son bombardement, octobre 2015
Article

War Breaks Out: Interpreting Violence on Healthcare in the Early Stage of the South Sudanese Civil War

This article seeks to document and analyse violence affecting the provision of healthcare by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and its intended beneficiaries in the early stage of the current civil war in South Sudan. Most NGO accounts and quantitative studies of violent attacks on healthcare tend to limit interpretation of their prime motives to the violation of international norms and deprivation of access to health services. Instead, we provide a detailed narrative, which contextualises violent incidents affecting healthcare, with regard for the dynamics of conflict in South Sudan as well as MSF’s operational decisions, and which combines and contrasts institutional and academic sources with direct testimonies from local MSF personnel and other residents. This approach offers greater insight not only into the circumstances and logics of violence but also into the concrete ways in which healthcare practices adapt in the face of attacks and how these may reveal and put to the test the reciprocal expectations binding international and local health practitioners in crisis situations.