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Reconsidering the Basic Human Needs for the East African Pastoralists

The International Workshop "Reconsidering the Basic Human Needs for the East African Pastoralists: Towards the Localization of Humanitarian Assistance"

Organizer: The Localization Project for the New Framework of Humanitarian Aids in East African Pastoral Societies (

Co-organizer: Center for Global Studies, Graduate School of International Relations, University of Shizuoka (


This workshop explores the possibilities of localizing humanitarian assistance frameworks to East African pastoralists. It is incorrect to depict the livelihood of East African pastoralists without considering humanitarian assistance and its secondary effects. However, too little attention has been paid to the issue of humanitarian assistance among East African pastoral societies.

Many studies revealed that humanitarian assistance is not necessarily a neutral, impartial, and apolitical act. In addition, cultural diversity has not yet been examined thoroughly in humanitarian research, although it is not an acultural practice.

In order to respond to the cultural diversity and current reality of the transformation, I introduce the “articulation sphere approach,” which focuses on the intermediate realm between the local and the universal. This approach may not only show us an initial sign of the self-help efforts of the victims themselves after disasters, but also opens up the possibility of localizing universal humanitarian assistance frameworks from below.

Date: December 10-11, 2015

Venue: Conference Hall – Winds, Shizuoka Convention & Arts Center “GRANSHIP,” Shizuoka, Japan (


Day 1: Dec. 10 Thur.

PART 1. Current Realities of Humanitarian Assistance among East African Pastoralists

  • 10:00-10:50 Introduction: The Articulation Sphere Approach. Shinya Konaka (University of Shizuoka)
  • 11:10-12:00 Strengthening Local Safety Nets as a Key for Improving Food Security of Pastoralists in East Africa. SUN Xiaogang (Kyoto University)
  • 13:00-13:50 Livelihood and Healthcare in East African Pastoral Societies. Itsuhiro Hazama (Nagasaki University)
  • 13:50-14:40 Embodying the Space of Global Humanitarian Assistance: Food Preference and Socio-economic Activities of Somali Protracted Refugees in Dadaab Refugee Camps, Kenya. Naoki Naito (The University of Tokushima)
  • 15:00-15:50 The Articulation between Material Culture of East African Pastoralists and Non Food Items of Humanitarian Assistance. Shinya Konaka (University of Shizuoka)
  • 15:50-16:25 The Life Strategies of South Sudanese in a Refugee Settlement in Uganda. Yoshinori Mochizuki (University of Shizuoka)
  • 16:45-17:45 Plenary Session Day 1

PART 2. Humanitarian Assistance Frameworks Reconsidered

  • 9:30-10:05 An Empirical Analysis of a Project on Commercialization of Smallholders' Horticultural Crops and Poverty Reduction: What are the Implications to Human Security?. Go Shimada (School of International Relations, University of Shizuoka, Visiting Scholar, Columbia University)
  • 10:05-10:40 Aid Workers' Challenge: Access to Vulnerable Groups. Masako Yonekawa (Rikkyo University)

PART 3. Comparative Perspectives: Herders, Farmers, and Hunter-gatherers

  • 10:50-11:25 Humanitarian Assistance from the Viewpoint of Hunter-Gatherer Studies. Naoki Matsuura (University of Shizuoka)
  • 11:25-12:00 The Third Countries Resettlement of Somali Refugees in Kenya: Focus on the Process and Cultural Orientation. Seiji Utsumi (Kyoto Women's University)
  • 13:00-13:55 The Daily Life Strategies of Small-scale Farmers after Prolonged War: Long-Term Influence of Humanitarian Assistance. Rumiko Murao (Rikkyo University)

PART 4. Assessment of the Project

  • 13:55-14:30 Commentary Presentation Session 1. Saverio Krätli (Freelance researcher and international consultant in pastoral systems; Editor of Nomadic Peoples)
  • 14:50-15:25 Commentary Presentation Session 2. Sada Mire (Executive Director, Somali Heritage; Researcher, Leiden University)
  • 15:25-16:00 Commentary Presentation Session 3. Mesfin Taffese (Member of Board of Trustees, Pastoral Environment Network in the Horn of Africa)
  • 16:20-17:20 Plenary Session Day 2


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