IASC Definition of ‘Local’ and ‘National Actors’ – a barrier to achieving Grand Bargain localisation commitments

Publication language
Date published
04 Oct 2023
Local capacity, Funding and donors

Grand Bargain Signatories engage with local and national responders in a spirit of partnership and aim to reinforce rather than replace local and national capacities. The intent of the Grand Bargain was transformational, not decentralisation or multi-nationalisation of International Organisations. However, the loophole in the IASC definition of local and national actors is diverting from the true intent of the GB localisation commitments. 

In July 2016, the IASC humanitarian financing task team (HFTT) agreed to develop a localization marker as an activity under its work plan. An informal sub-working group called "Localisation Marker Working Group", co-convened by CAFOD, OCHA and Development Initiatives, was convened. The LMWG initiated a process to discuss and agree on a set of definitions that would answer the following questions:

  1. What is a local or national responder - to whom does the 25th target apply?
  2. What does the term as directly as possible mean in practice?