Construction Standards Working Group
Construction Good Practices
This document sets out common standards for the responsible delivery of building construction in humanitarian settings as agreed by the Shelter Cluster with the aim improve accountability in ensuring the safety, timeliness and quality of the buildings that agencies are responsible for.
Irrespective of whether construction is implemented through direct labour, contractors, some degree of community
involvement, and even support to self-recovery, the responsibility ultimately falls to the promoting agency. Poor design, planning, implementation and maintenance can leave users underserved and vulnerable to injury or death, not just for the lifetime of the assistance but critically for the subsequent lifetime of the building. However, globally recognised construction practice, standards and building codes often are incompatible with humanitarian imperatives, internal pressures or donor expectations which can result in legitimate but poorly understood trade-offs that compromise building quality in favour of more immediate pressures. Lack of awareness of the good practice needed to deliver construction is a further factor that often leads to uncomtortable compromises. It is anticipated that these Construction Good Practice Standards, will influence greater commitment of decision makers and implementers, to eliminating the false economies, shortcuts and lack of oversight that limit public safety and decrease the sustainability and resilience of the buildings.