Geneva 2019 Special Course on Protection in Humanitarian Settings: From Theory to Practice

Participants during one of PHAP's courses on humanitarian law and policy

Course description

Protection work is carried out by a range of actors, all working towards the shared goal of ensuring that the rights of individuals are respected in disaster response and complex emergencies. However, different organizations at the domestic and international level approach and operationalize protection in different ways. These approaches are often complementary, but can sometimes be confusing or even contradictory. To successfully operate within this space, and to harmonize and coordinate efforts, protection professionals need a firm understanding of both the shared notions of protection and the differences between organizations.

This course aims to strengthen understanding of the underlying shared principles and frameworks of protection in humanitarian response, as well as how the different conceptions of protection are implemented in practice by organizations operating in this space. The course will also use the Professional Standards for Protection Work as a point of reference throughout the week. The course starts with an overview of the notions behind protection and the relevant legal frameworks. It will then cover the architecture for protection at the domestic level and then at the international level, as well as coordination mechanisms. The course will also take a more in-depth look at the implementation of protection by using the project cycle to examine the programs of different organizations. While the course will address current issues and challenges throughout the week, there will be a particular focus on data protection and the use of data in protection work.

The faculty includes protection specialists and legal experts, as well as organizational representatives presenting their programs. As the course is highly interactive, participants are also expected to participate actively and analyze, reflect on, and discuss their own experience of protection work.

Target audience

The course is designed for mid- and senior-level staff of UN and other intergovernmental agencies, components of the Red Cross/Red Crescent movement, NGOs, and government agencies with direct or indirect experience of humanitarian action in situations of armed conflict. Others with relevant experience, including diplomats, military personnel, and journalists, are also encouraged to apply.

How to apply

Please use this application form to apply for the course.

The course is open to PHAP members and to non-members. PHAP members enjoy course fee discounts, as well as other benefits. If you are not yet a member of PHAP, you can apply for membership and the selected training simultaneously through the course application form.

PHAP members who have already attended five or more days of training courses offered by PHAP, HPCR, or HPCR International, may be eligible for our Returning Participant Discount Program.

Group discounts are available for agencies and employers wishing to send several staff to PHAP trainings. Please visit our fees and terms and conditions page or contact us directly.

Course fees

  Regular fees
(for PHAP members)
Special Course on Protection (5 days) € 1500 € 1650

Fees cover all training material, access to preparatory online course on the Essentials of International Humanitarian Law, and lunches and coffee breaks for the days of the training. Fees do not cover travel or accommodation costs.

For information about group rates and available discounts, please visit our course fees and discounts page.

PHAP offers a limited number of seats at a reduced fee, in accordance with the association's Tuition Assistance Policy. Please read it carefully to check whether you are eligible and learn how to submit you request.

Before applying, please read about the terms and conditions of your application.

Location: Geneva, Switzerland Date and time: 25-29 November 2019 (9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day) Course fee: Click here
This Special Course on Protection is complementary to PHAP's other course offerings. To ensure that you have a strong grasp of the relevant international legal frameworks for humanitarian work, we recommend that you apply to the Advanced Professional Training on Humanitarian Law and Policy and the Advanced Professional Training on Displaced Persons, Refugees, and Armed Conflict (see calendar for dates).


Kathrine StarupKathrine Starup Head of Protection Unit, Danish Refugee Council (DRC)
Hugo SlimHugo Slim Head of Policy, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
Ralph MamiyaRalph Mamiya Executive-in-Residence, Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP)
André DuvillardAndré Duvillard Delegate of the Swiss Security Network (SSN)
Donatella RoveraDonatella Rovera Senior Crisis Response Advisor, Amnesty International
Christian Hänni Juge, Pouvoir Judiciaire de Neuchâtel
Raffaela Diana Directrice Générale Centre Neuchâtelois de Psychiatrie
Vincent Ballon Head of Unit for Detention, ICRC
Raphael Gorgeu Deputy Director of Operations, MSF Geneva
Dusan Vujasanin Head of Protection Data Unit, ICRC
Michel Anglade Director and UN Representative, Geneva Advocacy Office, Save the Children

Further speakers to be announced

Course facilitators

Pierre Gentile Pierre Gentile Head Center for Refugee's Integration in Lausanne; Ex-Head Protection Division, ICRC
Theo Boutruche Theo Boutruche Humanitarian Law and Policy Course Director, PHAP


View of the Domaine de Penthes
Domaine de Penthes
Chemin de l'Impératrice 18
1292 Pregny-Chambésy

Note: There is no accommodation directly at the course venue. It is easily accessible via public transport (buses V and Z) or an easy walk from Place des Nations. Free parking available.

Comments from past participants: Click here