Toward resilient humanitarian cooperation: examining the performance of horizontal cooperation among humanitarian organizations using an agent-based modeling (ABM) approach

Junko Mochizuki*, Toyasaki Fuminori, Ioanna Falagara Sigala

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

This article proposes a multi-agent simulation model to examine how different operational environments and incentive mechanisms affect the collective performance of complex humanitarian response systems. Using the UN Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD) system as an example, a stylized model of one service provider, two member organizations and multiple humanitarian crises is developed to illustrate the changing uses of four alternative relief goods sourcing options, namely: i) own storage for own items ii) UN storage for own items iii) stock-swaps and iv) white stock uses. Under the plausible assumption that the past success of sourcing options influences member organizations' future resource allocation, the model indicates that the additional buffer stock capacity offered by horizontal cooperation induces undesirable system dependency: while it gives member organizations more flexibility to meet highly stochastic demands under uncertainty, it also encourage them to store less of their own relief goods as a result. This tendency was particularly notable under a flexible budgeting regime, highlighting the further need to understand and evaluate the details of the decision-making heuristics of individual member organizations.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalJournal of Natural Disaster Science
Volume36
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)35-52
Number of pages17
ISSN2434-6705
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 512 Business and Management
  • Horizontal Cooperation
  • Humanitarian Organization
  • Agent-Based Modeling

Sustainable Development Goals

  • GOAL 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal
  • GOAL 13: Climate Action

Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)

  • AoHP: Humanitarian and societal logistics

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