ALNAP lessons papers: A case for humanitarian desk-based reviews

This blog post describes the use of ALNAP’s new approach to lessons papers applied to a review of lessons learnt from sectoral and multi-sectoral humanitarian responses to earthquakes since 2008.

4,000 papers initially identified were screened using a quality appraisal template developed specifically for the project. This resulted in 65 papers that were reviewed to identify lessons learnt.

This resource and the following information was contributed by Kaye Stevens.

Authors and their affiliation

Helene Juillard,  Key Aid Consulting.

Key features

This blog makes the case that it is worth investing in searching, screening, extracting and analysing secondary data to inform future programing in the humanitarian sector. Using the ALNAP’s new approach to lessons papers improves knowledge management within the sector and avoids unnecessary costs associated with the collection of primary data when information is readily available from secondary sources.

In contrast to systematic reviews in the medical field that use quality criteria to exclude research that doesn’t meet a ‘gold standard’ rigorous literature reviews in the humanitarian sector can look for consistent lessons learnt across contexts, crisis types or sectors from quality research.

How have you used or intend on using this resource?

This blog is useful for illustrating the value of desk-based research into lessons already learnt.

Why would you recommend it to other people?

The blog demonstrates that value of an improved knowledge management approach that is fit for purpose in the humanitarian sector.