This learning session provided a more in-depth treatment of the principle of humanity, focusing on practical dilemmas in its application. Directly following this learning session, a discussion and consultation event in support of the World Humanitarian Summit was organized on the same topic.


Dr Hugo Slim Dr Hugo Slim has recently been appointed as Head of Policy at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Geneva where he leads the policy development for ICRC’s global humanitarian diplomacy. Hugo started his career as a frontline humanitarian worker for Save the Children and the United Nations working in Sudan, Ethiopia, Morocco, Israel, and the occupied Palestinian Territory. Before joining ICRC he was Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Ethics, Law and Armed Conflict at the University of Oxford. Previously he been Chief Scholar at the Centre of Humanitarian Dialogue in Geneva and Reader in International Humanitarianism at Oxford Brookes University. He has been on the boards of Oxfam GB and the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD). Hugo’s books include: Humanitarian Ethics: A Guide to the Morality of Aid in War and Disaster (2015), Essays in Humanitarian Action (2012), Killing Civilians: Method, Madness and Morality in War (2007), and Protection: A Guide for Humanitarian Agencies (2005).


Marc DuBois Marc DuBois currently an independent humanitarian consultant/researcher/blogger, was the Executive Director of MSF-UK from March 2008 until March 2014. He joined MSF in 1999, landing as a project coordinator in Khartoum, Sudan, where he managed a basic healthcare program. Following Sudan, Marc went to Angola as a Humanitarian Affairs Officer and then moved to Amsterdam, spending over six years in the Humanitarian Affairs Department of MSF-Holland, first as an advisor and later as head of department and researcher. Marc has a degree in philosophy from Yale University (BA 1981), an MA in development studies from the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague (1988) and a degree in law from Columbia University in New York (JD 1994).


Please note that this recording ony includes the learning session with Hugo Slim – it does not include the ensuing panel discussion on the same topic. For the recording of the full event, please visit

Session recording (YouTube - faster loading time)

Session recording (Adobe Connect - higher quality)

Session recording - Downloadable audio podcast

PHAP Credentialing Program

PHAP Credentialing Program

Applying Humanitarian Principles in Practice

This event will help you prepare for the PHAP Credentialing Program certification in Applying Humanitarian Principles in Practice.

The event will address domain 1, in particular, segments 1.1, 1.3, 1.7, 1.8, 1.11, and 1.12 of the certification assessment outline. It will also address some aspects of segment 3.1.

Read more about the PHAP Credentialing Program

Learning objectives

  • Understanding of the core humanitarian principle of humanity, both in its definition and its implementation.
  • Knowledge of examples of the practical implications of humanity in the course of humanitarian action.
  • Understanding of the nature of challenges and dilemmas involved in translating humanity into operations.
  • Familiarity with the role that humanity plays within the ICRC, and in their interactions with other actors.


PHAP members will have the possibility to undergo a two-part assessment after the session as part of the PHAP Continuous Learning Credits framework.

Part 1: Comprehension check

Part 2: Written reflection

To encourage peer learning among members, selected essay responses will also be published on the website, if approved by the writer. As a member, you can comment on the responses and read other members' comments.

Read the written reflections