Introduction to Humanitarianism in Urban Settings


Introduction to Humanitarianism in Urban Settings

This course is subsidised through generous funding from Lloyds Charities Trust.


As urban populations worldwide continue to grow, urban enivronments are increasingly the sites of humanitarian crises, from natural disasters to conflict and displacement. It is now more vital than ever that aid agencies have the capacity to respond effectively in these often complex contexts. 

The Introduction to Humanitarianism in Urban Settings course will equip private sector engineers and technical specialists with the necessary skills and knowledge to work effectively in the early stages of an urban emergency. This course aims to outline key issues associated with the humanitarian sector and the realities of working in urban emergencies.

The course will examine the humanitarian context, the concept of humanitarian principles, the international humanitarian system, accountability, international law, individual responsibility, the potential impacts and dilemmas of humanitarian responses and how the private sector can support a successful humanitarian response.


  • Explain the timeline for a fast onset natural disaster.

  • Describe the urban post disaster context and the challenges that it presents.

  • List the actors in a humanitarian response, and to describe their roles and how they work together.

  • Explain the humanitarian guiding principles including standards and accountability.

  • Explain key words, terms and acronyms specific to the humanitarian sector.

  • Identify personal risks working in an urban emergency environment.

  • Describe their role within the humanitarian context and what will enable them to carry out that role.



Engineers, project managers and technical specialists from private sector organisations with professional experience in water supply, sanitation, construction or structural engineer-ing. They may have limited or no experience of working in a humanitarian setting but should have an interest in working in an emergency response to carry out technical assessments of urban infrastructure.


Please note this course consists of two days’ face-to-face training, with self-study before and between these days. The face to face days training take place on the 21st and 28th September. 

The course will be made up of four separate modules. Participants must attend/complete all of the modules.

Module 1 Pre-Course Reading to be carried out by participants prior to the first workshop. Module 2 A one day workshop running from 8.30am until 5pm at the RedR office in London. Module 3 Self Study to be carried out independently in the week between the first and second workshops. Module 4 A one day workshop from 9am until 4pm at the RedR office in London. Training methods will include a mixture of presentations by experts, group discussions and practical exercises.

“Thank you so much for this useful training. By taking the assessment quiz on Moodle, I found shocking improvements”

“Trainers and speakers are so knowledgeable- their experiences really bring the course to life”

“Thank you very much it was an enjoyable course and gave a great broad range of introduction to ways I can get involved in the future in my current professional role as a water engineer”

Any questions? Check out our FAQs here and our T&Cs here.

If you have any questions about this course or require further information, please contact

In case of any complaints, please email

RedR UK is committed to making sure everyone’s needs are met, including people of different genders, ages and disabilities. If you have any specific access requirements or learning needs RedR are committed to try and make reasonable adjustments to support your needs, please email or phone 0207 840 6000 at any stage of the booking process to talk directly to RedR about your needs.

Course Overview

Course Length
8 days
Book tickets on