Shelter Meeting

Shelters Meetings are suspended until further notice

The Shelter Meeting supported technical discussions worldwide over good practice and prioritisation, involving five IASC clusters: CCCM, Early Recovery, Global Shelter, Protection and WASH. National and regional participation was supported through live videoconferencing and posting presentations online, constituting an on-going resource of the state-of-the-art within the sector.
Since DFID funding ended in 2011, opportunities for sustainability were explored at every Meeting and, as a result, a series of further meetings were held additionally with donors and partners. A series of funding applications were submitted to all of the major donors, however no sustainable solution has yet been identified. The Meeting is valued by partners and there is broader interest in expanding its scope to support technical discussions across all sectors and clusters, including holding events at national and regional levels.
The Shelter Meeting cannot be maintained with its current ethos, scope or format unless a more sustainable solution is found.
The Shelter Meeting moving forward
The Global Shelter Cluster (GSC), through its Strategic Advisory Group (SAG), has decided to provide financial support for the organization of the next edition of the Shelter Centre Shelter Meeting, to take place adjacent to the GSC Meeting. The GSC SAG considered the Shelter Meeting provides a valuable opportunity for the shelter sector to exchange technical initiatives and good practice in addressing shelter needs and agreed to support a one-day event in 2014, while a longer term solution is identified to be able to sustain future editions of the Shelter Meeting.
The other clusters that participated in the Meetings and in discussions over the future of technical fora have yet to announce positions upon technical events supporting their scopes, additional to their existing meetings and working groups.

Details of the last Shelter Meeting may be found here.

Details of previous Shelter Meeting may be found using the list of Meetings on the left.

The Shelter Meeting


The Shelter Meeting is a biannual conference for the humanitarian shelter sector, with participation from governments, donors, IASC clusters, UN bodies, IOs, the Red Cross Movement, NGOs, independent humanitarian shelter specialists and academic research bodies.

Participants use the Shelter Meeting as a community of practice, in order to:

  • engage and support all stakeholders in the global shelter sector
  • link all coordination supporting the shelter sector, including IASC clusters
  • engage, link and support other events and initiatives in the shelter sector
  • engage, link and support the events and initiatives of other humanitarian sectors and cross-cutting issues
  • support consensus on policy, standards, specifications & operating procedures
  • share programmatic and technical good practice on on-going field operations
  • share information on project activities valuable for the global shelter sector
  • agree and prioritise further project activities valuable for the global shelter sector
  • form external working groups to support project activities
  • review project activities


Participation is encouraged from around the world using live interactive videoconferencing. Those unable to attend in person or online are encouraged to view participants’ presentations through this website, which captures the state-of-the-art of the sector.

Eligible to attend the Shelter Meeting are the humanitarian departments of governments, donors, IASC clusters, UN bodies, IOs, the Red Cross Movement, NGOs, independent humanitarian shelter specialists and academic research bodies.

Shelter Meeting participants have voted that ineligible to attend currently are all profit making organisations, including the commercial private sector. Proactive efforts have been made to engage the private sector, such as through the Shelter Partners Forum, and Shelter Centre is open to receiving expressions of interest for further supporting linkages between the humanitarian and private sectors through independent fora.

Sessions at the Shelter Meetings are held generally under the Chatham House Rule:

 When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed.”

Presentations and summary notes are posted on this website for public use, with the permission of the presenters.

Hosting and themes

Hosting organisations and themes are agreed for each Meeting, enabling host organisations to highlight their own priorities for the sector, both internal to their organisation and to their colleagues within the sector. Past hosts have included CARE International, Habitat for Humanity International, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), International Organization for Migration (IOM), Médecins Sans Frontières Belgium (MSF), Norwegian Refugee council (NRC), Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation / Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit (SDC/SHA), Swiss Solidarity, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Development Programme / Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery (UNDP/BCPR), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN/OCHA), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), United States Agency for International Development / Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA).

Past themes have included Agreeing a Recovery Plan, Inter-sector Priorities, Knowledge Management, Natural Disaster Preparedness, Private Sector Engagement & Haiti, Shelter & Settlement Reconstruction and Recovery from Day 1, Shelter After Disaster, Transitional Settlement: Displaced Populations.

The Shelter Meeting developed into a global sector forum from peer review meetings for the publication Transitional Settlement: Displaced Populations, managed by the University of Cambridge shelterproject. The first Shelter Meeting was held in 2004, hosted by UNDP. Today, the Shelter Meeting is facilitated by Shelter Centre.


Previous Shelter Meeting participants have included the following.

Government representatives

Government of Maharashtra, India

Humanitarian bi-lateral and multi-lateral donors

Department For International Development Conflict and Humanitarian Affairs Department Operations Team (DFID CHAD-OT)
European Commission Humanitarian aid Office (ECHO)
Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)
United States Agency for International Development/ Office of the United States Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID OFDA)
Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation/Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit (SDC/HA)

IASC Clusters

United Nations bodies

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat)
United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR)
United Nations Joint Logistics Center (UNJLC)
United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN/OCHA)

International organisations

Red Cross / Red Crescent Movement

Non-governmental organizations