Larissa Fast appointed as Executive Director for the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute (HCRI)

Larrisa Fast

We are delighted to announce that Larissa Fast, Professor of Humanitarian and Conflict Studies, has been appointed as the new Executive Director of the University of Manchester’s Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute (HCRI).

Professor Bertrand Taithe, co-founder of HCRI and Executive Director for the past 13 years, will step down on September 1 to focus on his research on the cultural history of humanitarian aid and humanitarian medicine.

He said: "This is a very exciting time for HCRI and our work in the humanitarian sector.

"We have built an exciting research institute and a great community of learning around humanitarianism, global health, disaster response, and peace studies.

"I look forward to seeing HCRI expand and develop under Larissa’s leadership. Larissa’s expertise and insight across the humanitarian sector, including academia and policy, makes her perfectly placed to take HCRI forward through its next chapter.”

Larissa joined The University of Manchester in 2016 as a Fulbright-Schuman Research Scholar, having spent time on faculty at the Kroc Institute, University of Notre Dame (USA), and at Conrad Grebel University College (University of Waterloo, Canada).

Outside of academia Larissa also has extensive policy and practice experience, including positions at ODI’s Humanitarian Policy Group and as an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow at the US Agency for International Development.

On her new appointment, Larissa said: “I’m very much looking forward to stepping into the role of HCRI Executive Director in September.

"Having spent the last three years as part of HCRI’s senior leadership, I have seen first-hand the impact HCRI’s work and partnerships have had on the wider humanitarian sector.

"I am proud to lead such a forward-thinking and collaborative institute and look forward to working closely with staff, students, and our many external partners.”

HCRI is a leading global centre for the study of humanitarianism and conflict response, global health, international disaster management, and peacebuilding at the University of Manchester. Bringing together disciplines from medicine to the humanities, it explores questions and issues related to what the United Nations calls the ‘triple nexus’ – humanitarian response, development, and peace. Its work is driven by a desire to inform and support policy and decision-makers, to optimise collaborations between partner organisations, and to foster increased understanding and debate.

Alongside her role as Executive Director, Larissa will continue her research endeavours, focused on the uses of data and technology in the humanitarian sector and as Principal Investigator on the Researching the Impact of Attacks on Healthcare project.

You can find out more about the work of HCRI via www.hcri.manchester.ac.uk.

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