Skip navigation.

International Organizations, Disasters & Humanitarian Relief

Databases & Search Engines | International Governmental Organizations | NonGovernmental Organizations

This guide serves as a basic research tool for the work of International and NonGovernmental Organizations in the fields of Disasters and Humanitarian Relief. For additional publications consult Pathfinder (the catalog of the UC Berkeley library) and Melvyl (the catalog for all the UC campuses and other research collections in the state).

Databases & Search Engines

Alertnet. Humanitarian news network which aims to keep relief professionals and the wider public up-to-date on humanitarian crises around the globe.

Forced Migration Online. Provides access to a variety of online resources dealing with the situation of forced migrants worldwide. Includes a digital library.

Geography. (UCB Access Only). Indexes 2000 journals, monographs, books, conference proceedings, covering the international literature in international development.

Humanitarian Practice Network (HPN). Forum where field workers, managers and policymakers in the humanitarian sector share information, analysis and experience. Includes a series of papers and reviews.

HungerWeb. From the Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy.

ICRC Databases on International Humanitarian Law. Databases on international humanitarian law treaties and national level implementation, with commentary.

International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS). (UCB Access Only). Indexes journals, books, chapters, and book reviews in the fields of economics, political science, & sociology from more than 100 countries.

Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre. Searchable resource with coverage of ongoing situations of conflict-induced internal displacement in the world. Includes thousands of documents, maps, country profiles, and analyses of internal displacement at regional and global levels.

PAIS International and PAIS Archives. (UCB Access Only). Indexes books, journals, government documents, statistical directories, grey literature, research reports, conference reports, and web sources related to public policy, politics, economics, and social issues worldwide

Relief Web. Web portal from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Hails itself as "the world's leading gateway to information on humanitarian emergencies and disasters."

International Organizations

European Union Humanitarian Aid Office (ECHO)
. Humanitarian aid office of the European Union. Site includes lists of publications and decisions.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
. Includes a section on emergency relief operations. See also the FAO Global Information and Early Warning System.

Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission. Includes section on mitigation of marine related disasters.

International Fund for Agricultural Development. Specialized agency of the United Nations dedicated to eradicating rural poverty in developing countries.

Joint UNEP/OCHA Environment Unit. United Nations mechanism to coordinate the international response to environmental emergencies and natural disasters.

Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). The UN AIDS agency. See the section on HIV/AIDS in Emergency Settings.

United Nations Capital Development Fund. Investment fund for Least Developed Countries to help reduce poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). United Nations children's agency. See the section for publications on children and emergencies.

United Nations Development Programme Disaster Reduction Unit. See also UNDP Publications on Disasters.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The United Nations Refugee Agency. Includes many online books, papers and statistics.

United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction. UN agency charged with reducing human, social, economic and environmental losses due to natural hazards.

United Nations Millennium Development Goals Web Site. Outlines the background, objectives and progress to date of the eight UN Millennium Development Goals.

United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Chief UN office for coordination of humanitarian affairs, within the UN itself and with other international agencies, especially for major emergencies and natural disasters.

United Nations Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries. UN Office for Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries, and Small Island Developing States.

United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO). UN agency with responsibility for maintenance of international peace and security. Includes links to onging missions, e.g. in Chad and Darfur.

United Nations Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee. "Third Committee" of the UN General Assembly, with a mandate to address human rights, social development, refugees, advancement of women, indigenous peoples, and more.

World Food Programme (WFP)
. The United Nations Food Agency. The WFP is the world's largest international food aid organization, dedicated to combating hunger in nations with severe food shortages.

World Health Organization. Activities, reports, news and events in WHO programmes and offices working on the health-related aspects of disasters.

Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs)

There are many NonGovernmental Organizations devoted to disasters and humanitarian relief. Please see the UC Berkeley Library research guide on
Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) for additional information. The following are some of the more important NGOs in this field.


American Council for Voluntary Interaction. Links to disaster relief organizations.

Directory of Development Organizations. Over 47,000 organizations of all kinds listed by region and country. One of the most extensive compilation of NGO country directories.

Idealist.Org. Excellent online NGO directory. Includes section on "Disaster Response Resources".
. Network of over 400 international agencies working in development, human rights and disaster relief.

TakingITGlobal. International non-profit organization centered on young people interested in connecting across cultures. Good source of NGO information by country and area of focus. Go to browse organizations.

USAID Directory of Private Voluntary Organizations. Pull down menu by "activity sector" includes food security, disaster relief, etc.

WANGO. World Association of Non-Governmental Organizations. Excellent NGO directory by region.

Selected Humanitarian NGOs

American National Red Cross. Mission is to save lives and ease suffering by providing relief to victims of disaster, locally and globally.

Doctors Without Borders
. International medical humanitarian organization that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural or man-made disasters, or exclusion from health care in more than 70 countries.

Genocide Intervention Network. Nonprofit working to protect civilians from genocide and mass atrocities. Background and information on conflicts worldwide involving widespread civilian death and displacement.

International Crisis Group. Non-governmental organization working to prevent and resolve deadly conflict through field analysis and advocacy.

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, (IFRC)
. Related organization with the ICRC, the two societies share the same secretariat in Geneva. The Red Crescent is used in place of the Red Cross in many Islamic countries. See publications list.

International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Largest Humanitarian Organization. See their World Disaster's Report and extensive list of online publications.

. Large alliance of U.S. based international development and humanitarian nongovernmental organizations.

International Save the Children Alliance. World’s largest independent organization for children, working in 110 countries world-wide.

. Development web site dedicated to eradicating poverty worldwide

Red R. Mission to select and train personnel for humanitarian programmes working in disaster situations world-wide.

Relief International
. NGO providing emergency rehabilitation and development services in the areas of health, shelter, food, conflict resolution, etc.

World Vision International. Relief and development organization working in the areas of emergency relief, education, health care, economic development and promotion of justice.