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Methods and tools

Quality & Accountability COMPAS Quality & Accountability COMPAS
CHS Core Humanitarian Standard (CHS)
Pictogrammme Sigmah Sigmah Software
Pictogrammme Reaching Resilience

Reaching Resilience
Pictogrammme brochure Environnement Training
Pictogrammme brochure Participation Handbook
Pictogrammme globe terrestre The Quality Mission
Pictogrammme PRECIS Humatem PRECIS Method

The Quality of humanitarian action
1999 - 2003

Key word: The Quality of Aid /

Over 4 years, Groupe URD carried out a piece of operational research into quality in humanitarian action, analysing different types of crisis and all the different operational sectors. This research led to the development of the COMPAS method, a quality assurance method specifically designed for humanitarian projects.

On the basis of detailed analysis of humanitarian operations at all the different stages of the project cycle (from the initial assessment to project closure), the Quality project aimed to improve humanitarian practices and the service delivered to crisis-affected people.

Research was carried out on several continents, analysing different types of crisis, in consultation with humanitarian stakeholders : local populations, donors, local authorities and humanitarian organisations.

In 2004, this research led to the development of a Quality Assurance method, the Quality COMPAS©. This tool, based on project cycle management, can be used for different operational sectors (Water and sanitation, Health, Protection, Nutrition, Habitat and Urbanism, Agricultural activities, Education, Awareness raising) and in different humanitarian contexts (natural disasters, international conflicts, technological disasters, internal conflict, drought, etc.).

The COMPAS method is organised around a quality reference framework, which has the affected population and their environment at its centre. The framework is made up of twelve closely linked criteria: four impact and result criteria and eight structure and process criteria. It is used to manage and evaluate humanitarian projects.

In 2005, the idea of adding a data recording function to the Quality COMPAS© led to the creation of the Dynamic COMPAS® software, in order to:

  • Allow users to create project memory;
  • Increase opportunities for learning;
  • Make report writing easier;
  • Make communication and decision making easier between the head and field offices.

For more information about all our activities in connection with Quality, visit the COMPAS website

Read more

The quality project - Afghanistan, mission 1, 2002 (in French)
The quality project - Afghanistan, mission 3, August 2003 (in French)
The quality project - Afghanistan, mission 2, January 2003 (in French)