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Innovation & learning

Innovation | Action Against Hunger

Innovation, learning & strategic foresight

Over the last few decades, the fight against hunger has taken us many directions; from running small treatment centres in rural Africa to developing international guidelines for eradicating child hunger. Through these experiences and contributions, Action Against Hunger has shaped and transformed the way acute malnutrition is prevented and treated around the world.

But that is not enough. We also need to shape the future if we want to beat child hunger for good. And this requires a robust and dynamic culture of evaluation and learning in the organisation, and the capacity to capture good practices, build on successes and learn from failures.

It also requires better understanding the long-term future so we can anticipate how humanitarian and protracted crises will develop and plan ahead to meet future needs. 

Improving the quality of humanitarian response by unlocking the power of information

Today Action Against Hunger is more committed than ever to demonstrating the impact and quality of our programmes, going beyond the numbers and capturing the changes that we bring about everywhere we work. We believe that the more we learn from the past, the better we can plan for the future. We believe that better information will lead to more effective humanitarian action. 

Ultimately, we know that to really succeed in the fight against hunger we will need to go beyond measuring success. We will need to improve, improvise, test new ideas and try new things. We need to be responsible towards those we work for, but we need to be bold in our thinking. We recognise that what has worked for a decade might not work tomorrow. When we learned that treating malnutrition in hospitals was too expensive for caregivers, we moved treatment closer to the communities.  We recognise that our capacity to adapt our approach requires us to unlock the power of technology and human ingenuity in regular and tangible ways.

We believe in learning and innovation not because it is popular, but because it is part of who we are now and who we have been for nearly forty years.

Planning for the future 

In an age of uncertainty, it is ever more important that we to understand how humanitarian and protracted crises are changing and developing, and how that influences our plans and strategies to meet future needs. Humanitarian organisations like Action Against Hunger operate in a very reactive environment, making long-term planning extremely difficult. 

This is why, together with our partners at the IRIS institute, we have created the Interagency Regional Analysts Network to improve strategic humanitarian planning for the future. The Interagency Regional Analysts Network provides foresight and analytical research capacity which informs operational and management teams, and allows them to prepare strategically for the future. Our expert analysts provide insight, analysis and research on topics as varied as migration, food security, demography, counterterrorism, political volatility and nutrition. Find out more