About Us

In October 2016, five leading humanitarian organisations, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the World Food Program (WFP), Médecins sans Frontières (MSF- Switzerland) and the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HD), launched the Centre of Competence on Humanitarian Negotiation (CCHN), based in Geneva.

The Centre of Competence facilitates the capture, analysis and sharing of humanitarian negotiation experiences and practices with a view to supporting a more systematic approach to frontline negotiation. It provides a space for multiagency dialogue and intends to foster a community of practice among humanitarian negotiators.

This joint endeavour is supported by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). During a five-year incubation phase, the Centre will be hosted by the ICRC and, with the support of the five Strategic Partners, organises dedicated events, peer-to-peer exchanges and carries out research on issues identified by practitioners.

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Information Leaflet

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Our Mission

The Centre of Competence’s core objectives are to:

1

Facilitate critical reflections, learning and informal peer exchanges among frontline negotiators.

The Centre offers a safe, informal and neutral space to discuss and review humanitarian negotiation practices in regions affected by conflicts.
2

Support the development of a stronger analytical framework and greater capacity for effective humanitarian negotiation.

Informed by current practice, the Centre contributes to the professional and policy debates surrounding frontline negotiation processes, tools and strategies.
3

Foster a community of practice among humanitarian professionals engaged in frontline negotiations.

The ultimate goal of the Centre is to facilitate the emergence of a global community of frontline negotiators across agencies, regions and themes.

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Mission Statement

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Our Team

The Centre of Competence is staffed by secondees from the five Strategic Partners to enable the development of peer support, policy analysis as well as communication and networking activities on humanitarian negotiation.

Claude Bruderlein

Director

Claude Bruderlein is a Strategic Advisor to the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and lead researcher on ICRC negotiation practices. In October 2016, he was elected Director of the joint Centre of Competence on Humanitarian Negotiation (CCHN). He has been engaged in international humanitarian action since 1985. From 1990 - 1995, he worked in humanitarian assistance and protection with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Iran, Israel and the Occupied Territories, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Yemen as well as in Geneva as a legal advisor to ICRC operations. In 1996, he joined the United Nations in New York as Special Advisor on Humanitarian Affairs. He worked particularly on humanitarian access in Afghanistan and North Korea as well as the humanitarian impact of sanctions at the Strategic Planning Unit of the Executive Office of the UN Secretary General. He maintains a faculty research and teaching appointment at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and School of Public Health.
Joelle Germanier - CCHN Head of Operations

Joëlle Germanier

Head of Operations

Joëlle was deployed with the ICRC in various field operations in Africa and Latin America as a protection delegate and Head of Office prior to joining the CCHN. Previously, she led within ICRC’s Law and Policy Department a research project about International Humanitarian Law on the frontline, focusing on urban warfare. Besides her years of experience as a humanitarian practitioner, Joëlle worked as a political attaché for the Swiss Embassy in New Delhi. She holds an MA degree in International Public Law and a BA degree in International Relations from the University of Geneva and Vienna.

Martine Lapeyre

Head of Support & Administration

Martine is currently responsible for maintaining CCHN donor relations, coordinating event team and logistics, as well as overseeing administrative activities. Since she joined the ICRC in 1995, she has been engaging with humanitarian organizations and focusing on administrative, financial, logistical and HR issues. She has also worked in the field for many years, mainly in Chechnya, Congo-Brazzaville, Kenya, Sudan and South Sudan.

Maude Pittet Nazareno

Executive Assistant to the Director & Project Officer

Maude worked in the ICRC’s Department of International Law and Policy as Executive Assistant and Information Management Officer, prior to joining CCHN. She has more than 15 years in several ICRC’s Departments as Executive Assistant and Information Management Officer. Currently coordinating the “Prevention of Traumatic Stress in Negotiations Under Pressure” project, she is also a certified Hypnotherapist and Master in Neuro-Linguistic Programming as well as an IPMA Project Manager.

Toufik Naili

Negotiation Support Specialist - Curriculum & Network

Toufik Naili joined the CCHN in September 2019 as Negotiation Support Specialist on Curriculum and Network. He has worked for the ICRC, in the Middle East, as a protection delegate, and for several years as a Learning Facilitator (L&D) for the Humanitarian Leadership Program in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. He also worked in ILOT as a Project coordinator for the decentralized french cooperation. Toufik holds a Master's Degree in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Manchester.
Will Harper- NSS Africa

Will Harper

Negotiation Support Specialist - Africa

Will was Head of Mission for MSF France in South Sudan, one of MSF’s largest missions globally prior to joining the CCHN in 2019. He has 10 years of experience in response and management to the humanitarian crisis in Africa, Asia and the Middle East with INGOs and MSF. Before managing large-scale health projects with MSF, his work focused on implementing and managing emergency and long-term mental health and protection programming as well as work in crisis counselling and juvenile justice. Will holds a master’s degree in Counselling Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Naima Weibel - NSS Asia

Naima Weibel

Negotiation Support Specialist - Asia

Naima previously worked as Programme Development Consultant for the CENAD, and as Programme Development and Reporting Officer for the IOM Iraq mission. She holds an MA degree in International Peace and Security from King’s College London and a BA degree in International Relations from the University of Geneva. Her academic research focused primarily on the impact of movements of population in Afghanistan and in Southeast Asia. Before joining CCHN, Naima also worked as Programme Manager for a think tank developing risk governance policies, MSF and the Consulate General of Switzerland in China.

Karim Hafez

Negotiation Support Specialist - Middle East

Karim supports the CCHN in researching and analyzing humanitarian negotiation practices, with a regional focus on the Middle East. He has previously worked with international organizations and reputable think tanks, including the ICRC’s Division of Policy and Humanitarian Diplomacy, United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), and the Cairo Center for Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping in Africa (CCPA). He has a master’s degree in public policy from the Willy Brandt School of Public Policy and a Bachelor of Arts in political science from the American University in Cairo (AUC). He is fluent in English, Arabic, French and German.

Andreas Kaufmann

Communications Officer

Andreas has joined the ICRC in January 2016 and is seconded to CCHN as Communications Officer. Previously, he worked in communications in the ICRC's Department of International Law & Policy. Previously, he also worked for Swisspeace, the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich, and the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. He (co-)authored and contributed to numerous publications and blog posts analyzing international relations and humanitarian affairs. He holds an M.A. in Political Science from the University of Zurich and a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Geneva.

Agusmia Putri Haerani

Communication Associate

Agusmia Putri Haerani joined CCHN in June 2019 as a Communication Associate. She is responsible for supporting the CCHN communication activities, including but not limited to the humanitarian negotiation community engagement, external relations, event and promotional materials, publications and donor visibility. Previously, she worked in communication departments of foreign governmental and academic institutions, Asian Development Bank (ADB) and UNHCR. She holds a master's degree in multicultural and multilingual communication from the University of Luxembourg.

Jane Bennett

Accountant

Jane Bennett joined the CCHN team in December 2018 as a part-time Accountant. She is a qualified C.P.A. and finance and HR professional with over 20 years of experience in humanitarian and human rights NGOs. Previously, she served as the Director of Finance and Administration – in Geneva for the International Commission of Jurists, ICVA (the International Council of Voluntary Agencies), and the World YWCA and, in Jordan, for the International Medical Corps.

Sofia Mueller

Events Coordinator

Sofia organizes international workshops and meetings of CCHN. She previously worked as a Project Coordinator for Initiatives of Change Switzerland, focusing on storytelling and migration. She holds an MA degree in Public Management and Politics from the University of Lausanne and Bern, and a BA degree in International Relations from the University of Geneva.
Nikolas Rubiato - CCHN Events Coordinator

Nikolas Rubiato

Events Coordinator

Nikolas is currently responsible for the logistics of the different CCHN workshops taking place around the world. Previously he had worked for the Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire (CERN) as a protocol officer in charge of organizing the visits of the official guests of the directorate. He has a diploma in hospitality management but has always been interested in the organization of events particularly in the humanitarian field.

Strategic Partners

The Centre of Competence is the result of a Strategic Partnership between five agencies and organizations providing humanitarian assistance and protection in complex emergencies: the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the World Food Program (WFP), Médecins sans Frontières (MSF- Switzerland) and the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HD). This partnership was adopted at the High-Level Meeting of the Strategic Partners, organized under the auspices of the Swiss Permanent Mission to the UN in Geneva on 30 November 2015.

With the support of

Structure & Governance

The Centre of Competence serves as a central hub for the Strategic Partners’ efforts to strengthen the capacity of humanitarian professionals to engage effectively in negotiation processes. While its activities are designed to support professional staff from the five Strategic Partner organisations, these activities are open to the participation of professionals from all humanitarian organisations active on the frontlines of conflict.

Under the guidance of the Strategic Partnership, the Centre of Competence is hosted on a temporary basis by the ICRC for a period of five years. At the end of the incubation period, the Strategic Partners will decide on the opportunity to establish a permanent institutional framework for the activities of the Centre.

The Centre relies on financial and in-kind contributions of the Strategic Partners as well as external donors. The fiduciary responsibility for the management of the Centre rests with the ICRC.

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CCHN Concept Paper

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ToRs of Strategic Partnership

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