Training Courses
Negotiation for Humanitarian Responders (NHR)

All aid workers need to be effective negotiators.

People’s lives can depend on it. Are you equipped to negotiate with potentially volatile non-state actors? Do you have effective strategies you can employ to overcome resistance to a project or to negotiate with government officials? Our experienced facilitators will prepare you for these and other practical scenarios often encountered in humanitarian contexts.

Negotiation for Humanitarian Responders is a four-day training course that will improve your effectiveness in the field. The course aims to provide participants with the skills to advocate for the most vulnerable, mobilise support when you need it, and influence the powerful.

Designed and delivered by humanitarian experts (with frontline negotiating experience) from RedR Australia, this course will equip you with tools to improve your negotiation skills.

If you require this course to be tailored for your organisation, please visit the Customised Training page for more information.

No Dates Currently Available

Degree of Difficulty

This is a four day intensive classroom based course. Please ensure you are well to gain the most from your training experience.


Who is this course for?

This course is ideal for humanitarian workers and government officials responding to humanitarian crises. It builds on participants’ field experiences, observations and ideas so they develop and learn from each other, and the extensive experience of our RedR trainers. It is assumed that participants will have experience working in the humanitarian sector and an understanding of international humanitarian concepts, principles, standards and terminology.

Whether it’s negotiating your relief items on to a military plane for distribution, with government officials to accommodate Sphere Standards, with armed combatants to allow the passage of aid or with a local village chief to ensure women from disaster-affected communities get their voices heard, working in the humanitarian sector involves a never ending series of negotiations.

In this course, you will hear directly from experienced aid workers from RedR Australia trainers who have extensive field experience working with international non-government organisations (INGOs) and United Nations agencies. Our facilitators go beyond theory to share their personal experience of the realities and complexities of negotiating in humanitarian settings.

The course is in English and participants require a reasonable proficiency. You will benefit most from this course if you have field experience and/or have completed RedR Australia’s Essentials of Humanitarian Practice course.


Learning Objectives

Aims and Objectives
This course aims to support the humanitarian sector’s efforts to apply a deeper level of analytical and strategic thinking to humanitarian negotiations. The course will help you advocate for and within your organisation.

Course Objectives

  • improve essential interpersonal and communication skills
  • apply advocacy tools and techniques
  • understand key legal frameworks and mandates and how they affect humanitarian negotiations
  • negotiation with donors
  • negotiate with the military
  • build a toolbox for contextual analysis and developing negotiating strategies
  • prepare for negotiation in humanitarian and protection contexts
  • read body language when conducting face-to-face negotiations
  • monitor implementation of negotiated agreements

Aims and Objectives

  • theories of negotiation and defining negotiation objectives
  • dilemmas and tactics of multi-party negotiations
  • humanitarian diplomacy
  • extreme advocacy
  • civil military interactions
  • government and donors
  • culture, gender and negotiation
  • bottom lines analysis
  • developing strategy
  • forming the right team
  • pitfalls and strategies for negotiating through an interpreter
  • tactics to manage aggressive negotiations


Course Fees

Full Rate: $2,000 AUD Reduced Rate: $1,800 AUD

Includes all food, accommodation and training materials.

You are eligible for the reduced rate if you currently work for an NGO or are a member of RedR Australia's humanitarian roster (please supply your membership number). Unless otherwise stated, all courses are residential and course fees are inclusive of meals, accommodation, training and materials, but not transport to and from the venue. Course fees are in Australian dollars. A non-refundable deposit of AUD $400 is payable at the time of enrollment to secure your place on a course. This payment must be made via credit card through our secure payment facility.

Further instructions regarding course logistics will be provided upon payment of course fees.


Essential Course Information


Victorian Emergency Management Institute, 601 Mount Macedon Rd, Mount Macedon VIC 3441.

All our residential courses take place at VEMI and provide a range of learning experiences, including scenarios and field exercises.

RedR Australia's training facilities are located in remote environments. Therefore please be prepared with all your medical needs.way from the venue. 

Course Timing

Registration takes place from 9:00am on the first day of all courses. To receive your course certificate you must complete the entire course.


Please arrange your own travel to and from our training venues.Travel insurance is recommended for all applicants and is mandatory for international participants. 

Pre-course Learning

It is strongly recommended that all participants complete the prescribed reading prior to the course. Pre-reading will be sent to registered participants two weeks prior to the course commencement date.

Please refer to your course orientation guide, received upon enrollment, for more detailed essential course information.


The Training Team

Our trainers have extensive experience in complex emergencies and natural disasters in Africa, the Middle East, the Americas and the Asia Pacific.