Introduction

In 2011, OCHA will build on progress made towards achieving the three goals articulated in its 2010-2013 Strategic Framework: more effective delivery of OCHA services, building greater constituencies of support for humanitarian work, and strengthening OCHA’s performance management and administration.

The challenge of responding to the Haiti earthquake and the Pakistan floods in 2010, combined with budgetary constraints and senior management turnover resulted in further prioritization of OCHA’s activities during the first year of implementing the framework. Significant progress was made, particularly in strengthening surge capacity and filling field vacancies through a new roster system. OCHA achieved further discipline in its budgetary process and took a more strategic approach to resource mobilization. The organization also made advances in preparedness, and in more tightly aligning its needs assessment work with its resource mobilization and allocation efforts.

OCHA has established cross-organization Management Task Teams (MTTs) to further drive implementation of the Strategic Framework. The MTTs provide a practical mechanism for bringing headquarters, regional and country offices together around each strategic objective to plan and monitor performance. They help to strengthen accountability, ensure organizational coherence, integrate learning from evaluations and promote innovative approaches to OCHA’s work.

In July 2010, the MTTs carried out a comprehensive mid-year review of OCHA’s strategic plan, leading to further prioritization and budget adjustments. The MTTs were also used to develop more focused strategies and performance frameworks for 2011. These are summarized in the following pages.

Budget constraints in 2011 mean focusing even more strongly on core functions, including the provision of effective leadership to the international humanitarian community and advocacy on behalf of the vulnerable.

In 2011, OCHA will work to implement the recommendations from the second phase of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Cluster Evaluation. It will strengthen its inter-cluster coordination role and support improved system-wide accountability. OCHA will also continue to strengthen management of the common humanitarian programme cycle at the field level, primarily through the clusters. It will do this by improving needs assessments and analysis; providing a more efficient platform for joint planning, prioritization, resource mobilization and allocation; and finding practical solutions to support real-time programme monitoring by clusters.

Humanitarian financing will continue to become an increasingly important coordination tool to bolster aid efficiency. More Member States are providing the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and locally managed country-based pooled funds with the resources needed for more equitable and timely funding. In 2010 alone, across the globe, OCHA provided the programmatic support required to allocate over $405 million from the CERF and more than $360 million from country-based pooled funds (all figures as of the end of November 2010). OCHA also coordinated common humanitarian action plans and consolidated and flash appeals whose combined value in 2010 was more than $11 billion.

OCHA will sharpen its support to country-based preparedness, and play an active role in inter-agency efforts to strengthen national contingency planning in five pilot countries. It will begin rolling out packages of preparedness support tailored to the needs of disaster-prone countries. OCHA will focus on its specific added-value expertise in preparedness, ensuring that country-based humanitarian teams have the basic competence to quickly establish coordination mechanisms, such as clusters; trigger inter­national humanitarian response services, tools and financing mechanism; and have clearly articulated plans for working with national partners. OCHA’s support will be coordinated with and complement the support provided by other inter-agency partners.

At the end of 2011, OCHA will be halfway through an ambitious four-year framework. Throughout the year, OCHA will continue to monitor its performance and adjust its plans accordingly. It will introduce more sophisticated tools to facilitate online monitoring and reporting, and begin developing standardized performance frameworks for headquarters and field activities.