New Director for CERAH and Humanitarian Encyclopedia project

Geneva, 5 December 2019 – The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) and the University of Geneva welcome Professor Karl Blanchet as the new director of their joint Centre for Education and Research in Humanitarian Action (CERAH).

“Humanitarian challenges are becoming increasingly complex and require more than ever the training and research skills offered by CERAH”, said Yves Flückiger, Rector of the University of Geneva.

“Close relationships with major humanitarian actors in Geneva is one of CERAH’s greatest strengths and contributes to its high-level teaching and research activities”, commented Philippe Burrin, Director of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies.

In his new role, Professor Blanchet will provide vision and guidance to strengthen the role of CERAH as a global centre for academic excellence rooted into humanitarian action and practice, providing high quality education and training to graduates and humanitarian professionals. 

Professor Blanchet and his team will also reinvigorate CERAH’s applied research portfolio based on priorities within the humanitarian sector, including demystifying humanitarian language and concepts through its Humanitarian Encyclopedia project.

“I look forward to maximising the potential of CERAH. Through strong partnerships with global humanitarian organisations, we will deliver courses that are pertinent and relevant to the humanitarian sector“, said Professor Blanchet. “We want CERAH to be agile and flexible, adjusting to humanitarian trends and needs as they emerge, to ensure our students are equipped with the best tools and knowledge to fulfil their humanitarian careers“.

In the coming months, CERAH will further invest in its educational offer to make sure that top quality courses are delivered both in Geneva and in countries affected by humanitarian emergencies.

Before joining CERAH, Professor Blanchet had been working in health systems research at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine since 2010 and the co-director of the Health in Humanitarian Crises Centre. He has a management and public health background and brings to CERAH extensive experience in humanitarian action. Professor Blanchet’s research focuses on resilience issues in global health, specifically in post-conflict and conflict-affected countries.

Download our press release or read Prof. Blanchet biography.