The Harvard Humanitarian Initiative (HHI) is a university-wide center involving multiple entities within the Harvard community that provide expertise in public health, medicine, social science, management, and other disciplines to promote evidence-based approaches to humanitarian assistance.

The mission of the Initiative is to relieve human suffering in war and disaster by advancing the science and practice of humanitarian response worldwide. HHI fosters interdisciplinary collaboration in order to:

  • Improve the effectiveness of humanitarian strategies for relief, protection and prevention;
  • Instill human rights principles and practices in these strategies;
  • Educate and train the next generation of humanitarian leaders. 




Building a Better Response Launches

We are pleased to announce the global launch of the Building a Better Response e-learning course.

A brief video about the course can be found here.

Registration is free, and can be accessed here.

Building a Better Response is an online, interactive learning tool that guides you through a simulated disaster. The BBR e-learning is internationally available, free to use, and for emergency responders, it is an exceptional way to guide best practice and stay informed.


The Building a Better Response e-learning course consists of five units:

  • Foundations of Humanitarian Action
  • The International Humanitarian Architecture
  • The Cluster Approach
  • Planning and Funding the Humanitarian Response
  • International Law and Humanitarian Standards

Those who complete all five units will receive a certificate from the Humanitarian Academy at Harvard.