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Senior Transformative Agenda Implementation Team (STAIT)

About the Transformative Agenda

The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Transformative Agenda is a reform process initiated by the Emergency Relief Coordinator, together with the IASC membership, in 2005, aimed at transforming the way the humanitarian community responds to emergencies. It focuses on improving the timeliness and effectiveness of the collective response through stronger leadership, more effective coordination structures, and improved accountability for performance and to affected people. 

As challenges remain in deploying adequate leadership, putting in place appropriate coordination mechanisms at various levels and ensuring clear mutual accountabilities as evidenced by several major disasters over the past years, and because the application of the cluster approach has become overly process-driven and, in some situations, perceived to potentially undermine rather than enable delivery, the IASC Principals decided to review the current approach to humanitarian response and make adjustments. In 2011 they agreed to a set of actions that collectively represent a substantive improvement to the current humanitarian response model. All agreed actions and related documents are available on the IASC website.

How STAIT works

The Senior Transformative Agenda Implementation Team (STAIT) was created by the IASC Emergency Directors’ Group (EDG) in 2014. STAIT’s purpose is to enhance the delivery of principles, collective humanitarian assistance, and protection, by providing direct peer support to Humanitarian Coordinators (HCs) and Humanitarian Country Teams (HCTs) in the field.

The team does this in three ways:

  1. Inter-agency missions comprised of senior UN and NGO peers that work with HCs and HCTs, to review and strengthen the collective humanitarian response in the field. This includes conducting the mandatory Operational Peer Reviews in Level 3 emergencies
  2. Sharing learning and best practice about complex crises with humanitarian practitioners and leaders, based on practical examples from field operations. This includes the monthly STAIT webinar series
  3. Informing policy processes as appropriate, based on information collected from the field

Credit: UNICEF

Since 2014, The STAIT has undertaken 18 missions. During these missions, HCs and HCTs have highlighted the need for clear examples and practical steps, which can guide them as needed from a leadership point of view. Based on HC and HCT feedback, the STAIT focuses on sharing learning and best practice, on the role of collective leadership, in the following areas:

  • Collective leadership and fit for purpose coordination
  • Centrality of Protection (CoP)
  • Gender Based Violence (GBV)
  • Collective accountability to affected people (AAP)
  • Common mechanisms to prevent Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA) in operations
  • Strategic linkages and sequencing between HCTs and Inter-Cluster Groups
  • Building an enabling approach for Security Risk Management and Access
  • Strategic and programmatic linkages between relief and development, especially in protracted situations
  • Engagement with local actors as equal and strategic partners

The STAIT has a small core team of senior humanitarian professionals and seeks to complement the work of relevant IASC or other bodies that focus on the issues that arise during missions. As such, the STAIT maintains a clear focus on leadership. As a follow up to the missions and to facilitate field support, the STAIT works closely with the relevant IASC bodies.

 STAIT website