Trends and Transformations

by Solferino Academy | May 2, 2018 | Insights and Inspirations, Trends and Transformations

Available in: Spanish French Arabic

Over the last year, the Solferino Academy consulted with over 100 Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies and external experts. These consultations included  futures workshops, online gaming simulations as well as research and horizon scanning. The results were grouped into the following futures thematic areas and represent our first level findings. Click on each icon to explore the trend and transformation. Let us know your thoughts underneath the articles.

Future of Financing

The gap between humanitarian and development needs and financing is growing, yet largely we still rely on just a few traditional sources of funding. How do we mobilize alternate sources of capital to support communities?

Emerging Technology

The technological revolution is dramatically changing how we live and work. How do we support communities to take advantage of these opportunities and invest in these rapid changes to enhance the effectiveness of our work?

Conflict and poverty

Extreme poverty in the world will increasingly be concentrated in countries experiencing conflict and fragility. How do we better structure ourselves to respond?

Power and governance

Shifting powers structures and increased skepticism is challenging institutions. How can the network continue to build trust against this backdrop?


Participation and engagement

The nature of volunteering is changing; communities are engaging with social, humanitarian, and development causes in new ways. How will we adapt to these new contexts to ensure we are able to mobilize communities and volunteers in the support of humanitarian and development causes?


Climate and disasters

Climate-related impacts are expected to intensify significantly in the coming years,  deepening struggles for many ‘already’ vulnerable communities. How will the already stretched humanitarian system be able to respond?

New communities and cities

Migration, urbanization, the youth bulge, ageing populations and, highly networked citizens are changing the make-up of society. How will National Societies engage with communities when the very nature of community is changing?

Future of work

Advances in technologies will result in workforce shifts and a youth bulge grappling with the lack of productive employment. How will the network respond to a falling ratio of employment to population and, support communities and young people to adapt to a new world of work?

Health of the Future

Increasing threats from pandemics, non-communicable diseases, environmental health and over-burdened health systems alongside persistent health challenges such as water and sanitation are stretching the system. How can we more effectively meet complex health crises?


What do you think of these trends and transformations, are there any missing that you think are important? Which ones are the most important? Share your thoughts below.

Available in: Spanish French Arabic



    For certain. The highlighted fields are key in the prosperity of the new world we want. However I feel that its high time we stepped out of the comfort zones of providing relief and funding or any form of support basing on the needs assessment model of survive delivery and adopt an assets assessment model. In doing this the future will be sustainable enough because societies will try had to have something that the federations can build on during any interventions.
    You can contact me by email for any clarifications on the model am proposing.

    • Diana Keating

      I believe that all of the trends and transformations are important.

  2. Muhammad Danial Ahsan

    Hello Muhammad Danial Ahsan Here Working As Information Technology Manager in Pakistan Red Crescent The Above Mentioned Transformation are Very Much Important in the Upcoming Strategies. In My Point of View We Should Use Digital Commutation Regularly to Show our Activities and To inspire Other and Lunching Online Fundraising Appeals on Social Media Page.

  3. Marianna Miettinen Fosser

    Our world is changing in an incresing speed due to modern technology. How do we ensure that today’s education gives the knowledge and skills needed tomorrow, when we have difficulties in predicting and understanding how the furture world looks like. How do we ensure that all children get an education that prepares them for the future and close the growing gap between those who have everything and those who get nothing?

  4. Main uddin


  5. Lucy Morris

    Thanks – interesting conversation, and all of the above resonate for me. The other one that’s not yet profiled is about the need for greater alignment between organisational purpose and internal values/culture in order to sustain our human resource capacity. How do we value our staff/volunteers, and how can organisational values go beyond being platitudes to actively informing behavior e.g. support for staff/volunteers well-being in order to avoid burnout, and actively caring for ourselves and each other at work. See for a connected conversation about the need for reform within the wider sector.

    • Tanya Zolly

      Lucy, this is something I strongly agree with around the internal values and culture in order to sustain our human resource capacity.
      Taking care of us.
      It’s a discussion that needs to happen with all of ‘us’ having input.
      Feeling valued, supported, heard (for me) has possibly only just begun with the radical transparency that we are now seeing through the question times and survey. 🙂
      Being employed or volunteering in an organisation that holds a reputable world wide presence is not everyone’s choice, but it was ours and each of us came to Red Cross for our individual reasons. At the heart of even applying for the job or volunteer role you would hope that a desire to make the world a better place, to help the most vulnerable or to fulfil a humanitarian call was part of the motivation.
      Then who is better placed to discuss the care needed in the roles we fulfil?
      Re the healing solidarity conference you linked…OMG!!!
      What we’ll explore
      What it means to be practitioners with integrity, responsive to the people whom we serve, whilst allowing our values to stay intact.
      How to identify and disrupt the ways in which our sector manifests the things we abhor; colonial attitudes, racism, corporate structures.
      What it means to address our wellbeing and be self-reflective as practitioners
      How we can build just cultures in organisations, communities and initiatives which create the collective care we crave.
      On another note – Where is our number 10 trend of valuing environment and climate change?

  6. Michael

    Well it is a nice move though the society needs to move a way from relief based to asset based as this will enhance the capacity of the vulnerable communities ,and have something long lasting when emergencies occur

  7. HAKIZIMANA Grégoire

    Apprendre à travailler avec les nouvelles technologies n’est pas un exercice formel vide de sens ; l’accent doit être mis sur les acquisitions méthodologiques aux effets durables, consultation de banques de données, utilisation raisonnée de progiciels, de dictionnaires électroniques, etc. L’intérêt de ces démarches est facteur de motivation des volontaires face à l’intervention humanitaire.

  8. Line Begby

    One of the comments to a Thought Piece raised the question of whether it is actually possible to change minds, as of Strategy 2020. As much as we can work on saving lives in changing contexts and needs, in order to create real change we also need to work on changing minds. However, this has proven to be one big challenge. How can we change minds in order to question power structures, exclusion and discrimination? Is it possible to work for equitable humanitarian results and social inclusion unless we change minds? What does it require of our volunteers, our ability to question status quo, and do we really have the political will to do so?

  9. Akshy Athu

    I believe the knowledge management is a significant area we need to focus, specially planning for 10 goal to achieve.
    I see the knowledge management ( including M&E) has extensions to technology, future funding and future work.
    Happy to clarify more if required.

  10. Betty Lloyd-Jones

    Can you please explain where this leads to for the Homelessness Services?

  11. Samantha Dickson

    These are relevant and timely thematic areas. How do we as a RCRC Movement narrow the gap in terms of preparedness and mitigation versus response and recovery costs. COVID-19 has highlight a new definition for the word vulnerable making our work even more widespread and diversified. Communities will need to be self-reliant until “Help Arrive!” There will always be the expectation of the Red Cross to be there and to be present. This gives us the opportunity to look beyond, try to predict and therefore plan ahead, engaging communities through innovative technologies to reduce risks. Education and advocacy remains at the core of our work, utilising the talents of volunteers to reach further and to reach more.

  12. Niraj karki

    I believe each trends are parallel with each other.however, I always believe tourism and migration from animals to human which can play a vital role to enhance the knowledge and expands the economy as well as creating a one community among different race. I think new communities and culture will create more opportunities.



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