Refugee camps are a specific form of the institution of the “camp”, which in recent global history represents a special type of exercise of violence and power (Greiner et al. 2013). In the last decade, many studies have highlighted the conflictual, sometimes violent everyday situations that are caused by the structural and institutional character of these institutions (see Täubig 2009; Bauer 2017; Christ et al. 2017 et al.). In this context refugee camps are theorized in the frame of social processes of power, control and security (Pieper 2008) and described as “total institutions” (Goffman 1961), in which everyday life is framed and strongly regulated by administrative restraints. Due to occurring human rights violations, conflicts and violence, local welfare organisations, IOs, NGOs and refugee councils have since long demanded a more humanitarian accommodation and the establishment of complaint management systems, minimum standards and concepts for protection against violence. In our contribution, we want to discuss the influence and agency of local actors and refugees in the establishment of quality management systems, selfhelp structures and organisations as well as alternative solidary models of accommodation in Germany, the Hotspots at the EU borders and in Kenya. The practical implementation of sustainable improvements is a major challenge, as lack of resources, power hierarchies, conflicts and violence are system inherent to refugee camps. In the negotiation with local actors and inhabitants of refugee camps who demand to improve the living standards in the camps, local politics, power and hierarchies, trust/distrust dynamics, intercultural communication and cultural sensitivity play a crucial role.