The civil society sector is experiencing pressure and strain unlike it has experienced before, under the COVID-19 pandemic. To explore how the sector has responded, engaged and acted this past year, the All India Disaster Mitigation Institute and Accountable Now have published a special accountability issue of AIDMI’s Southasiadisasters.net journal. This issue of Southasiadisasters.net is titled ‘Accountability to Affected Populations in Times of the Pandemic’ and focuses on how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted accountability in the humanitarian, development and risk reduction sectors.
The pandemic caused the global economy to slow down, which invariably led to a massive funding crunch for civil society organizations (CSOs). Moreover, given the scale of the pandemic, all CSOs have had to pivot their activities to respond to the challenges of COVID-19. All these factors have drastically changed the meaning and scope of accountability to affected populations (AAP) for donors, CSOs and governments. This issue of Southasiadisasters.net brings together a wide range of articles from practitioners, researchers and community leaders from across the world on how they have re-negotiated the meaning of accountability in this changing landscape.