Social assistance in crises, whether part of a social protection system or driven by humanitarian needs, provides crucial support to people affected by disaster and conflict. Accountability is a central component of delivering effective social assistance. The increasing emphasis on reinforcing social protection in fragile contexts and the Grand Bargain ‘participation revolution’ workstream suggest the need for a fresh look at accountability frameworks and how they play out in practice for the people they aim to serve. Approaches to accountability are usually researched and analysed separately as part of social protection, humanitarian, or governance (citizenship) responses in fragile contexts. This brief therefore seeks to connect evidence from humanitarian and development accountability approaches to better understand the linkages and disconnects, as well as to identify opportunities for future research and learning.