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Sustainable Development in Humanitarian Action

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and International Committee of the Red Cross via FutureLearn

This course may be unavailable.


Find out how to make humanitarian action more sustainable

Incorporating sustainability into humanitarian action is key to making humanitarian organisations more effective and accountable. This course will show you how.

You’ll look at sustainability in the supply chain and field operations of a humanitarian organisation, covering the three dimensions of sustainable development: economic efficiency, social equity and environmental preservation.

Ultimately, you’ll learn how to design and implement a sustainability strategy; at project, programme and organisational level.

This course is designed for staff and volunteers working in the humanitarian sector, particularly in the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement who want to develop their understanding of sustainable development. It will also benefit individuals operating in developing countries that have weak State capacity, helping them inform their sustainability-related decision making.

This course is also suitable for those with an interest in social justice, activism and humanitarian aid, and learning how sustainability can be applied to humanitarian action.


  • What is sustainable development in a humanitarian context?
    • Welcome to the course
    • What is sustainable development?
    • From conceptualization to implementation
    • Mainstreaming sustainability into an organization
    • Recap
  • Sustainability in the supply chain: a life-cycle perspective
    • Introduction
    • The life-cycle analysis
    • Quality, social and environmental audit
    • Procurement optimization
    • Recap
  • Sustainability in field operations
    • Introduction
    • Water management
    • Energy management
    • Waste management
    • Humanitarian action and climate change
    • Recap
  • Setting up a sustainability programme
    • Introduction
    • Contributing to SDG'S at a local level
    • Developing a sustainability strategy
    • Final Project
    • Recap

Taught by

Kathrine Vad


4.7 rating at FutureLearn based on 61 ratings

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