Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Weeks
HNPW 2024 (29 April - 10 May 2024)

Session title: Private Security Companies as a Security Risk Management Measure
Organizer(s): GISF
2 May 24 11:00-12:30

One under-explored facet of the rise of PSCs is their impact on humanitarian action and the delivery of humanitarian aid. This panel will ask and attempt to answer a number of key questions relating to the use of PSCs in humanitarian settings, including:

  • With humanitarian organisations now widely contracting private security actors to secure their staff, assets and operations, how does this recent evolution blur the perception of humanitarian organisations as neutral actors but also create risks for the people they assist?
  • Guards of private security are often poorly paid and poorly treated: what are the responsibilities of humanitarian organisations vis-à-vis their security providers?
  • How should humanitarian organisations be selecting and vetting their security providers and what do are they typically doing this in practice?
  • What are the key risks for humanitarian organisations when contracting security providers and how can these be mitigated.


Jael Amara, Research and Gender Consultant, Consumer Options

Jael Amara is the co-founder of Consumer Options Ltd, a Pan African market and social research company with operations in East Africa. With 17 years in the market research industry working across Africa, Ms. Amara currently focuses on gender and research consulting. She was a part time lecturer at Makini College and has lectured Marketing Strategy, Marketing Planning and Project Management for Marketing for The CIM Professional Marketing Diploma level. She has also lectured Entrepreneurial Marketing for The Catholic University of the Sacred Heart Milan MBA programme delivered at Tangaza a constituent college. Ms. Amara holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology & Economics, an MBA from Catholic University of The Sacred Heart, Milan, Italy, a Masters in Organisational Leadership from the International Leadership University and a Post Graduate Diploma in marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing, UK. She became a Chartered Marketer in 2008.

Gregory Beattie, Global Operations & Plans Manager, IDG Security

Gregory Beattie serves as the Global Operations & Plans Manager with IDG Security Group and is a global security operations, risk & crisis management professional. With a diverse background, he has navigated complex security, humanitarian, and access challenges through roles in the private security sector, research, stabilisation, development agencies and humanitarian organisations. Some of his previous roles have included Global Roving Security Manager with the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), Mobile Safety Advisor with INSO, Co-Chair of the Nigeria Access Working Group and Chair of the NE Syria CAAFAG Working Group. He has also had various involvements in frontline negotiation, from CIMIC/CMCoord functions, engagement with state and non-state armed actors and crisis management negotiation. In his involvement with the private security sector, Mr. Beattie has performed a range of operations and project management functions, involved with large-scale SSR, crisis management and guarding projects. He has extensive operational experience in Afghanistan, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Myanmar, Nigeria, Syria, Turkey, Uganda and Ukraine.

Vincent Bernard, Senior Policy Advisor, International Code of Conduct Association

Vincent Bernard is Senior Policy Advisor at ICoCA. He has extensive experience in law and policy advocacy in complex environments. From 2010 to 2019, he was Editor in Chief of the International Review of the Red Cross, a leading academic journal on humanitarian law, policy and action, published by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and Cambridge University Press, and Head of the Law and Policy Forum, which led ICRC’s engagement with expert audiences interested in humanitarian law, policy and action. As Head of the ICRC’s field communication set-up from 2006 to 2010, he travelled and worked in most of todays’ conflict zones. He worked in humanitarian operations for 6 years in Dakar, Nairobi and Jerusalem. Mr. Bernard taught law and political sciences at the University of Marmara, Istanbul and is now visiting lecturer at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies and the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law.

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