Certifications in Humanitarian Needs Assessment (HNA)

Humanitarian Needs Assessment certifications

The Core and Advanced HNA Certifications are currently under development and will be launched in March 2019.

The PHAP Credentialing Program is developing Core and Advanced certifications in Humanitarian Needs Assessment (HNA). The certifications cover the competency areas of:

  1. Understanding humanitarian needs assessments;
  2. Planning needs assessments;
  3. Data collection for needs assessments;
  4. Analytical frameworks and assessment reporting; and
  5. Sector-specific needs assessments

For whom?

The Core HNA Certification is targeted at practitioners involved in humanitarian needs assessments at all levels who wish to demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental aspects of needs assessments. It is also designed as the first step for those with higher-level responsibilities in the area of needs assessments pursuing the Advanced HNA Certification. This certification is designed to be independent of specific frameworks a practitioner may be using (such as MIRA or HNO), focusing on the underlying core competencies, while ensuring a familiarity with all types of frameworks commonly used.

The Advanced HNA Certification can be pursued after having achieved Core HNA Certification. It is targeted at needs assessment specialists and general practitioners who wish to demonstrate that they have an advanced understanding of how humanitarian needs assessments are designed and carried out in practice, as well as a basic understanding of needs assessments in seven key technical areas: nutrition, food security, health, WASH, shelter, education, and protection. The Core HNA Certification is a prerequisite for the Advanced HNA Certification.

Why pursue certification?

The Core and Advanced HNA Certifications will be launched in March 2019, and will be an integral part of the PHAP Credentialing Program that aims to recognize knowledge and skills in complementary areas of humanitarian practice. The HNA certifications provides an opportunity for practitioners to demonstrate professional competencies and contextual understanding within the aforementioned scope of the certification. All certified individuals receive a verifiable digital badge as proof of their achievement that can be added to their CVs, social media profiles, email signature, or personal websites and portfolios.

Preparatory materials

Candidates may prepare themselves for the certification assessments in any way they choose and no specific courses are required. Free tools, useful links to learning resources, and other guidance to prepare for the HNA certifications will be available in March 2019.




ICE Member logo

As a proud member of ICE, we stay informed on best practices in developing and administering quality certification programs so that we may better serve you.

PHAP is proud to be a member of the Institute for Credentialing Excellence in show of our support of the credentialing community and our commitment to strive for excellence in our certification programs.


Practitioner Competencies Learning Center logo

The PHAP Credentialing Program is made possible through the Practitioner Competencies Learning Center, a joint initiative of the Humanitarian Leadership Academy, CHS Alliance, and PHAP working to develop solutions that strengthen competency-based approaches in the humanitarian sector at the individual and organizational level.