Conference: Asia and Africa in Transition

NEW DATES: 28-30 June 2021

Panel: From recipients to donors: New engagement of Asian countries in humanitarian aid in Africa

Conveners: Stig Jensen, Centre for African Studies, University of Copenhagen and Shiling Xu, Innovation Center for Risk Governance, Beijing Normal University

This Session focus on “new” Asia donor countries. The emerging of new state and non-state actors across Asia and Africa in humanitarian aid has stimulated extensive discussion over the last decade. These traditional important humanitarian recipients like China, Japan, India and Korea, are in transition from a recipient to a donor. They mostly denote in-kind relief materials (food, medicines) and personnel (medical team and relief team). The humanitarian involvement of these donors derives from a very complex array of national interests, paths and experiences, which creates different modes of humanitarian aid as visible “non-traditional” actors. However, empirical research about non-traditional actors remains scarce; most of the literature focuses on DAC donors and practitioners. This panel invites contributors to share their case studies and research findings on Asia’s engagement in Africa on humanitarian aid. Most specifically, it asks: what would explain these new actors’ motivation to go to Africa to deal with emergencies and crises? What are the challenges they have met during their humanitarian activites? Will these new actors contribute to change in understanding humanitarianism?