Floods in Pakistan: Rethinking the humanitarian role

Publication language
Date published
01 Nov 2022
Rapid Learning Review
Accountability to affected populations (AAP), Floods & landslides, Response and recovery

This report on the humanitarian response to flooding in Pakistan is the second in a series of rapid reviews conducted by Humanitarian Outcomes under the Humanitarian Rapid Response Initiative (HRRI), commissioned and supported by the UK Humanitarian Innovation Hub with UK aid from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office. The research took place in September/ October 2022, and figures are current as of October 2022. The review encompassed interviews with 86 informants from Pakistani and international aid entities, government authorities, and international donors (list appended), as well as analysis of humanitarian funding and operational data. In October, Humanitarian Outcomes commissioned GeoPoll to implement a telephone survey of 2,000 people in the provinces of Sindh, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Punjab to obtain the views of people affected by the floods. Humanitarian Outcomes has updated its Global Database of Humanitarian Organisations (GDHO) to reflect the current response in Pakistan.

The scale of the flooding in Pakistan since June 2022 is immense, with impacts exceeding previous disasters such as the 2010 floods. An estimated 33 million people have been affected, with 7.9 million displaced, and an estimated US$30 billion in combined losses and damages. Large parts of Sindh and some areas in other provinces remain inundated. Pakistan’s government and civil society entities are struggling to mount a commensurately large-scale humanitarian response that can meet critical needs, with a fraction of the international humanitarian funding and operational support that was mobilised in 2010. Evidence from interviews, available data, and a survey of affected people suggests that the international relief response to date has fallen well short of the need, raising fears for the prospects of recovery.