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International Recovery Platform

Background

Effective recovery and transition from a disaster event to ongoing development requires a nationally-led recovery planning effort which includes an evidence-based Recovery Framework. This requires a needs assessment process, often with international support, to determine damages, losses and recovery needs through an inclusive and multi-stakeholder process that serves as a tool for planning, coordinating and managing the recovery efforts.

Recovery has been described (ECOSOC General Assembly A/60/89 – E/2005/79 of June 2005) as “a period between the emergency and development phases when humanitarian needs must be met and the long-term benefits of rehabilitation and reconstruction have yet to be fully realized. While in the past such transitions were largely regarded as a sequential progression from relief to development, it is now recognized that there are various aspects of transition processes that must be addressed simultaneously”.

The post-disaster environment is characterized by a broad range of stakeholders engaged in supporting recovery and the transition from relief to development. Their interventions have typically been guided by planning and needs assessment exercises undertaken by individual and/or groups of agencies in parallel. Such efforts have varied in scope and rigor and been undertaken at different times during the response phase. Initially needs assessment are carried out by humanitarian actors during the early days of the emergency response. These assessments focus on humanitarian needs. Gradually assessments become oriented towards recovery. Some of these assessments are carried out by humanitarian actors who shift their focus to recovery and development; others are carried out by organizations that had not been present during the humanitarian period. These variations in practice have led to conflicting understandings of recovery needs and opportunities; have challenged coordination; and unnecessarily used resources, resulting in sub-optimal recovery response, including the rebuilding of risk and the failure to support the achievement of longer-term development objectives.

The PDNA project is managed in partnership between the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank and the European Commission in cooperation with a select group of high-risk countries. Members of the United Nations Development Group and the Inter-Agency Standing Committee - in particular its Cluster Working Group on Early Recovery - are key international stakeholders in the project. The project is conducted in the context of the International Recovery Platform (IRP) - a thematic platform of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction - towards the fulfillment of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA).

The project outputs include:

  • development of protocols of cooperation between the United Nations, the World Bank and the European Commission;
  • the Guide to Multi-Stakeholder Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) and the Recovery Framework (RF);
  • field testing of the Guide in disaster response as well as joint support of recovery management capacity development in high disaster risk countries.