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Upcoming research

Find out more about the research we're working on and how you can get involved.

At GISF, we believe that collaboration and inclusivity are essential to developing effective and impactful research. Through blogs, research projects and translations, we strive to represent many voices and welcome contributions from a diversity of actors and sectors. If you or your organisation would like to get involved in the making or dissemination of our upcoming research projects, please contact us at gisf-research@gisf.ngo.

Current projects and collaborations:

Partnerships and Security Risk Management: From the local partner’s perspective

Research Paper

Towards the end of the summer, we’ll be publishing a new research paper – Partnerships and Security Risk Management: From the local partner’s perspective. Building on four case studies from Colombia, Syria, Myanmar and Ethiopia, over 70 interviews and a global survey, this qualitative research investigates the perspective of local NGOs on security risk management and risk transfer, particularly in the context of their partnerships with international NGOs. By providing a space for local voices to be heard, the analysis seeks to spark greater dialogue between partners, explore misunderstandings and challenges, and deconstruct the processes of ‘risk transfer’. With the localisation agenda accelerating due to COVID-19, this topical research comes at a pertinent time.

Opportunity to engage: dissemination and communications

The research highlights that insufficient attention and resources are dedicated to the security risk management of local and national NGOs. Raising awareness about the security threats faced by local aid actors and having an open dialogue about them is essential to drive the localisation agenda forwards.

If you are interested in supporting our efforts to disseminate the research findings and start a conversation on the issues raised, please contact Léa on gisf-reseach@gisf.ngo.


Building on the research paper, GISF will develop practical tools and guidance (including a partnership audit) to enable partner international NGOs to address the obstacles identified and to adequately support local NGOs’ security. The toolkit will also provide resources to empower local NGOs to build their own security risk management capacity, including guidance on the kinds of support they can request from international partners.

Work on this project will begin later this summer and opportunities to contribute will be published closer to the time. To be notified of this project’s progress, please subscribe to our newsletter.

Engaging Private Security Providers

A new module on Engaging Private Security Providers will be added to the guide Security to Go: A risk management toolkit for humanitarian aid agencies. In a growing number of instances, humanitarian organisations find themselves in need of private security companies’ services in order to ensure the security of their staff or assets.

This module will provide practical guidance on working with private security providers, including developing strong procurement processes, maintaining good relationships with guards and monitoring a company’s performance.

This project is a collaboration between GISF and the International Code of Conduct Association (ICoCA).

Acceptance and Access

The relationships between aid organisations and the communities they assist is in constant evolution. Among others, changes in the global diplomatic order, the COVID-19 pandemic, the humanitarian-development-peace nexus and the effects of climate change affect the acceptance, access, and security of aid actors.

This summer, GISF will be seeking contributions in the form of articles for a new project related to acceptance. The format of contributions envisioned is similar to GISF’s 2014 publication Communications Technology and Humanitarian Delivery. To be notified when contributions open, please subscribe to our newsletter.

Blog and Translations

The GISF Blog

GISF welcomes contributions to our blog from anyone who has a particular interest or expertise in security risk management or related issues. If you would like to write an original piece for us, please send a brief summary of your ideas to gisf-comms@gisf.ngo.


GISF seeks to make its resources accessible to a large audience by increasing the translations of its work. If you would like to translate one of our original materials, please contact gisf-research@gisf.ngo.

View existing French translations and existing Spanish translations.

Latest releases

Original Research


If you’d like to get involved in our upcoming research, get in touch on gisf-research@gisf.ngo. Find out more about all of our research guides, papers and translations in our new publications catalogue.

Explore GISF's research

Access handy good practice guides, original research papers, topical articles and more.

GISF Resources