Germany’s humanitarian identity is at a formative moment. As a donor, it is increasingly influential, having overtaken the United Kingdom as the second largest bilateral contributor to humanitarian appeals. Yet while Germany’s humanitarian policies are sound, its role as a norm setter remains limited by its bureaucratic and civil society framework, which restricts the attention paid to humanitarian issues. Germany’s upcoming elections also have the potential to shift the leadership of key ministries and officials overseeing humanitarian aid. Increased collaboration between the United States and Germany on humanitarian issues should receive sustained attention in government dialogues, as well as in humanitarian organizations’ outreach and engagement. The U.S. government should prioritize bilateral and multilateral funding with Germany; harmonize policy; promote anticipatory and pooled-funding mechanisms that reduce incidence of humanitarian crises and increase flexible funding; encourage greater interaction between executive and legislative stakeholders and with advocates from German and U.S. civil society organizations; and explore opportunities to uphold norms and support principled humanitarian aid through better donorship.
Date of Publication
Center for International and Strategic Studies
Number of Pages
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