"Do No Harm"


Experience has shown that sometimes donor-funded projects inadvertently ‘do harm’ in situations of conflict and fragility. Aid is intended to be neutral, and still it risks becoming a resource to be fought over, potentially fuelling conflict. Support measures, inevitably, always have impacts on local politics and power dynamics, too.

Implementing relief or development projects in situations of conflict requires specific sensitivities for the local context. Well-intended activities meant to address problems in agriculture, in health, in water and sanitation or in food security may have serious side-effects on the relationships among local people in the respective area and may hence unintentionally contribute to a renewal of tensions and to an increase in the level of violence.


The “Do No Harm” framework tries to help planners and implementers to avoid such negative side-effects and to establish a positive impact on peace and stability instead. Although the particular project objectives would remain within the specific technical field and not shift to peace-building (“working on conflict”), the sustainability of projects planned in a conflict-sensitive way (“working in conflict”) can be considerably improved.


Against the described backdrop, we believe that conflict sensitivity is crucial, not only in form of a separate study, but rather as an integral part that accompanies the whole progression of the Feasibility Study.


For more Information on the "DoNoHarm" Concept

Conflict Management