CFP : New Types of Actors in Humanitarian And Development Public Policies

Although humanitarian and development policies have been seldom analyzed in terms of public policies, scholars have studied the different types of publics constructed by project logics and assistance bureaucracies. For twenty years, new group identities have been added to the existing nomenclature of international aid beneficiaries like the stakeholder or the participant in participatory projects. But it is unclear whether a single perspective on recipients is emerging. It is more likely that in environments with a high density of development/humanitarian actors those different categories of recipients coexist and compete. An empirically rich analysis of public policies in those social situations can provide insights into the shifting definitions of group identities during policy making processes and the legitimacy of aid regimes.

Thus, this panel takes international organizations/NGOs as public policy makers seriously: We will analyze the integration of ’new actors’ during the policy making process on a competitive market of humanitarian crises or countries particularly targeted by development aid. We welcome inductive case designs that present empirical data to the public as well as ethnographic and localized analyses of international regimes.

Two questions structure the panel:

  • How are new group identities integrated in development/humanitarian public policies in crises situations? Who are the actors promoting the formation of new types of beneficiaries? How do beneficiaries themselves participate in the process: do they comply or subvert roles assigned to group categories? How do dense international environments affect the creation of new policy targets?
  • What are the effects (e.g. in terms of legitimacy) of new group categories in emergency and crises situations in a comparative perspective? To what extent new types of actor are co-existing or competing in those situations? Can participatory models create more legitimacy (better integration of targets into international public policies? Change in power relations between international actors and beneficiaries?)

This panel will take place during 10th International Conference in Interpretive Policy Analysis, organised by the CERAPS (Lille 2 University/CNRS/Science Po Lille) in Lille from July 8 to 10, 2015 at the Faculty of Law and Political and Social Sciences and at Sciences Po Lille.

Jan Worlein* and Marie Saiget**

*Université Paris Ouest – Nanterre La Défense, Université Lille II – Droit et santé
**Sciences Po Paris – Sciences Po, Université Lille II – Droit et santé – France


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