September Book of the Month

The SSL ‘Book of the Month’ feature, highlights a book in our collection that has been chosen by one of our Subject Consultants. This may be a recent addition to our stock or an existing item that we would like to share with you.


Humanitarian ethics: a guide to the morality of aid in war and disaster

Hugo Slim

Hurst & Company, 2015

Shelfmark: HV553.SLI 2015




Our Book of the Month for September was selected by Sarah Rhodes, Subject Consultant for Forced Migration.

It was chosen because it provides invaluable practical help to aid workers as they face the moral and ethical dilemmas of assistance in war and disaster situations.


Book Overview:

Humanitarians are required to be impartial, independent, professionally competent and focused only on preventing and alleviating human suffering. It can be hard living up to these principles when others do not share them, while persuading political and military authorities and non-state actors to let an agency assist on the ground requires savvy ethical skills. Getting first to a conflict or natural catastrophe is only the beginning, as aid workers are usually and immediately presented with practical and moral questions about what to do next. This book has been written to help humanitarians assess and respond to the circumstances in which they find themselves.


‘Brilliant and incisive.  Slim develops a much needed moral compass to help aid workers, both seasoned and novice, to navigate the tensions between principle and practice – as well as the shoals of political manipulation in humanitarian action’.

Antonio Donini, Senior Researcher, Feinstein International Center, Tufts University.

‘It will help aid workers and managers alike understand why principles matter more than ever and how they can be used to make better choices’.

Sorcha O’Callaghan, Head of Humanitarian Policy, British Red Cross.

Where can I find it?

We have one lending copy of the title that is currently on display on top of our New Books Display Area (located round the corner from our Library Issue Desk). The shelfmark for the title is HV553.SLI 2015.

What would your SSL Book of the Month be? Do you have a favourite book in our collection? If so, we would love to know what it is. Add a comment below or email us.

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