The 2018 HHL Workshops

A In-Depth Overview: International Humanitarian City

IHC is the world’s largest humanitarian logistics hub. It is the only non-profit free-zone Authority hosting international humanitarian organizations and commercial companies. During this session, the participants will learn about the role and strategy of IHC with regards to emergency response and preparedness. The presenter will also talk about the Humanitarian Logistics Databank, one of IHC’s recent projects which were launched in February 2018. The databank provides the humanitarian community with a common database platform on humanitarian aid stocks and flow. A live display and simulation will be conducted during the session.
  • Khalid Al Awadhi, Deputy CEO, International Humanitarian City, Dubai

Addressing Supply Chain Talent and Know-how Shortages for the Health and Humanitarian Sector

Supply chain talent is in short supply worldwide. This problem is even more acute for the health and humanitarian sector. This has resulted from inadequate importance and attention to supply chain positions within health and humanitarian agencies/organizations, unclear long-term career trajectories for supply chain professionals in these organizations, and very few educational programs within the regions of focus. The shortage is further exacerbated by the change in the skillsets required for supply chain professionals working in health and humanitarian sector. Competencies in logistics are no longer sufficient to run complex multi-country supply chains; ability to work with advanced data and analytics is becoming extremely crucial.

Academic institutions, multilateral agencies, private companies, and non-profit organizations are all working to resolve the supply chain talent shortage in the sector through a variety of interventions. This workshop consists of a series of short Ignite talks by groups addressing this through a combination of approaches followed by an interactive discussion.

  • Prashant Yadav, Strategy Leader - Supply Chain, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Advances in Software for Supply Chain Management in the Health & Humanitarian Space

In health and humanitarian logistics, the use of technology for supply chain management has become essential for the effective management of products through the pipeline. Previously, software had limited functionality and was mostly used for data collection. Today, the options offer much more than mere data collection, with sophisticated stock management, ordering and notification systems that can be customized to the sector and context. However, as the options increase for health supply chain management software, projects and programs are finding it more and more difficult to keep up with the latest innovations and developments. Meeting the technology needs of your project and making sure the software can be effectively deployed is now more complicated than ever before.

This workshop provides participants the opportunity to learn from programs and companies working in the technology for SCM space and to watch live demonstrations of supply chain management software. Representatives from leading health and humanitarian software companies and non-governmental organizations who design, develop, and/or deploy SCM software will demonstrate how their software works, and provide examples of the added value the software brings to real projects. The purpose of each presentation is not to serve as a marketing opportunity, but rather an opportunity to share compelling examples of how their software is helping to strengthen supply chains and improve health outcomes by sharing recent examples from real projects.

  • Alexis Strader, Project Officer, People that Deliver
  • Jarrod Goentzel, Director, MIT Humanitarian Response Lab

Building Human Resources Capacity: A Review of the People that Deliver Initiative (PtD) Competency Compendium for Health Supply Chain Management

This workshop will explore the proposals to update the People that Deliver (PtD) Competency Compendium for Health Supply Chain Management first developed in 2014. The revised Compendium aims to meet the needs of both academic and practitioner communities while ensuring consistency with the newly developed PtD Theory of Change.  During this session, we will share our research on current and future supply chain trends to foster a better understanding of the competency areas required of today’s and tomorrow’s health supply chain professional. All conference participants are welcome to join this interactive workshop to explore and provide feedback on the relevance of the proposed changes.

  • Dominique Zwinkels, Executive Manager, People that Deliver    
  • Jean Blackstock, Independent HR Consultant, Jean Blackstock Consulting

Exploring the Use of Drones in Routine Public Health Settings

This workshop will focus on the use of drones in routine health settings to provide regular delivery or cargo services for health commodities, lab samples, and other supplies.  A set of discussion topics will be presented, guided by subject matter experts that will lay out some key challenges that participants will explore in small working groups, to address a) barriers to adoption by countries, donors and NGOs and b) barriers to entry for new technology providers and private companies looking to provide services.  The discussions with address questions such as: What is the right enabling environment for testing UAS? What business models could attract companies to provide drone services? What value proposition would encourage Governments to adopt the technology? 

The workshop is facilitated by the Interagency Supply Group, which has a newly formed Coordination Group to address adoption of drone technology.  This group is supported financially by USAID, UNICEF, DFID, GFATM, GAVI and BMGF with support from partners at WFP, WEF, VillageReach, JSI, and PATH.

  • Sara de la Rosa, Unmanned Aerial Systems Coordinator, Interagency Supply Chain Group (ISG)
  • Ryan McWhorter, Manager, Immunization Unit, Supply Chain Strengthening Center, UNICEF
  • Olivier Dafawe, Senior Program Manager, Health Systems and Private Sector Engagement, VillageReach
  • Adam Marlatt, ETC Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Coordination Manager, WFP
  • Hitesh Hurkchand, ISG Coordinator, UNICEF

Food Aid Optimization and Last Mile Distribution

Improving the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of delivering food aid products to beneficiaries has been a long-standing objective; data have been collected and models are being developed or improved to address these issues along the supply chain linking suppliers of commodities and products with delivery ports within developing countries. Much less is known, however, about the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of activities once the ‘hand-off’ is made to NGO or other actors charged with delivering food aid products over what is now commonly referred to as the ‘Last Mile.’ A complete supply chain model (from commodity procurement to delivery to final beneficiaries) developed for the USAID Food For Peace program will provide the workshop’s structure. In-country decision-maker perspectives will be shared by WFP and CRS collaborators.


  • Ozlem Ergun, Professor, Northeastern University
  • Greg Olson, Program Operations Division Director, Office of Food For Peace, Bureau for Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance, USAID
  • Paola Corrado, Senior Logistics Officer, Head of Supply Chain Unit, World Food Programme
  • Tsega Berhane, Logistics Manager, Catholic Relief Services

IAPHL and PtD Join Forces to Better Understand Supply Chain Leadership

Reliable, resilient and sustainable health supply chains require strong supply chain leaders to serve as ‘stewards’ to provide vision, guidance, and oversight for the health supply chain, both in the public and private sector. These supply chain leaders embrace change and need to drive change for efficient, creative strategies to improve quality and performance focusing on delivering value for money, and ensuring safety and efficacy of products. Historically, there has been a lack of recognition of the importance of these leaders or “stewards’ in public health supply chain management, with this role often undervalued and overlooked. We will begin the workshop with a report out from the June 2018 IAPHL moderated discussion on this topic, then speakers will be asked to react to the findings and provide their unique views and insights, followed by an interactive discussion

  • Dominique Zwinkels, Executive Manager, People that Deliver
  • Elizabeth Igharo, Executive Director, IAPHL, John Snow, Inc.
  • Yasir Jamal, Vice President of Supply Chain in North Africa and the Middle East, Unilever
  • Carolyn Hart, Vice President, International Division, John Snow, Inc.
  • Abdourahmane Diallo, Minister of Health, Guinea
  • Stany Banzimana, Lecturer, University of Rwanda

Smart Supply Chains: Building the Skills of a New Generation of Supply Chain Professionals in the Humanitarian Field

Ensuring the integrity of a supply chain and mitigating the risk of damage, theft, loss, or stockouts is a major concern when operating logistics operations in timesensitive emergency settings. The staff that manages getting products into countries sometimes lack the basic skills to correctly undertake supply chain management, particularly in emergency settings when procurement and other functions must be carried out quickly and with little or no margin for error.  For this workshop JSI will adapt a shorter module from an overall training and material being developed for OFDA and its implementing partners that will orient participants to best supply chain practices for health products in humanitarian settings, engage participants in further vetting of the material and best practices, and direct participants to available material and opportunities for further learning. 


  • Nadia Olson, Senior Technical Advisor, John Snow, Inc.
  • Gregory Roche, Senior Technical Advisor, John Snow, Inc.
  • Chris Warren, Senior Technical Advisor, John Snow, Inc.

Event Notes

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Important Dates

  • Friday, May 18: Deadline for Oral, Workshop and Poster presentation proposals
  • Tuesday, April 24: Early Registration ends
  • Sunday, May 27: Extended Early Registration ends
  • Monday, May 28Notification of Presentation Acceptance
  • Friday, July 13: Registration closes
  • Wednesday, July 18 & Thursday, July 19, 2018: Days of Conference

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Previous Conferences

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About the Conference Series

The Health & Humanitarian Conference series is organized each year by the Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS) at Georgia Tech in partnership with INSEAD, MIT, and Northeastern University, with generous support from corporate and other organizational sponsors.

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