Olivier Bangerter

Thematic Team Leader at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

Dr. Olivier Bangerter, a graduate in theology of both Lausanne (Masters) and Geneva (PhD) universities, recently joined the Small Arms Survey research project in Geneva as a senior researcher. He had previously worked for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) since 2001, and was the ICRC’s Advisor for Dialogue with Armed Groups from 2008 to 2011. In this capacity he met members and former members of some sixty armed groups around the world.


  • Reasons why armed groups choose to respect international humanitarian law or not

    The decision to respect the law – or not – is far from automatic, regardless of whether it is taken by an armed group or a state. Respect for IHL can only be encouraged, and hence improved, if the reasons used by armed groups to justify respect or lack of it are understood.

  • Territorial gangs and their consequences for humanitarian players

    Territorial gangs are among today’s main perpetrators of urban violence, affecting the lives of millions of other people. This article looks at some courses of action that may be taken by humanitarian agencies in an environment of this nature: dialogue with the gangs (including how to create a degree of trust), education, services, and dialogue on fundamental issues.