Sphere chapter authors worked to consolidate the input received on the Handbook draft throughout 2017. Credits: Louis Brisset
Following an intense year of drafting, consultation and review, the fourth edition of the Sphere Handbook is approaching the final stages of production. The consolidated manuscript of four foundational chapters and four technical chapters will be submitted to the Sphere Executive Board for validation and approval in May.
The Sphere Board, the 16-member statutory body overseeing Sphere, will review the content, evidence, presentation, and coherence of the Handbook including an analysis of the process which led to its finalisation with global input. Upon validation, the finalized text will be prepared for publication and translated into three additional languages. All language versions – English, French, Spanish, and Arabic – are planned to be released simultaneously upon launch, in the fall of 2018.
The revised Sphere standards will become available in a variety of online and offline formats, ensuring humanitarian practitioners can use the Handbook in different ways that match their preferences and operational setting. Handbook users will continue to be able to download the new edition for free from the Sphere website, and will have the new option to work with it on an interactive online platform. The current Humanitarian Standards Partnership mobile application (HSPapp) will be updated with the new Handbook and langauges. Print copies will remain available for purchase.
This new edition marks a significant achievement for humanitarian quality and accountability: it will consolidate learning and evidence from those operations which have most affected humanitarian response in recent years, while also reflecting the expertise of the most diverse range of global practitioners who directly contributed to this revision over the past year.
This latest revision process was indeed the most comprehensive and inclusive in Sphere’s twenty-year history: the new Handbook will be grounded on more than 4,500 comments from humanitarian practitioners and on the experience of 1,500 people who provided input during consultation events in 40 countries.
Stay tuned to our social media to learn more about the revision process and the launch !